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Full text of "Household discoveries : an encyclopaedia of practical recipes and processes"





1 









,;?r^a^^^ 



ALBERT R. MANN LIBRARY 
Cornell University 

Gift of 
Thomas Bass 




From Home Bakings, by Edna Evans 
San Francisco. 1912. 




3 1924 089 480 218 



i;i)e t;i)anfe«gtt)tng 
iWenu 

Oyster Soup 

Celery Olives 

Boiled Fish, Egg Sauce 

Boiled Potatoes 

Roast Turkey Giblet Gravy 

Mashed Turnip 

Browned Sweet Potatoes 

Cranberry Jelly 

Lettuce, French Dressing ' 

Cheese Straws Salted Almonds 

Lemon, Apple, Pumpkin, 

Mince and Cream Pie 

Ice Cream Ginger Wafers 

CofFee 
Fruit Nuts Bonbons Raisins 





Cornell University 
Library 



The original of tiiis book is in 
tine Cornell University Library. 

There are no known copyright restrictions in 
the United States on the use of the text. 



http://www.archive.org/details/cu31924089480218 



HOUSEHOLD 
DISCOVERIES 




ENCYCLOPAEDIA 
OF PRACTICAL 
RBCIPCS AND 
PROCESSBS 

By SIDNEY MORSE 




THE SUCCESS 

T>» E.TV -y OH.K. 




COPYRIGHT, igoS 

By S. L. Morsb. 

COPYRIGHT, igog 

By The Success Co, 




TO 

THE THOUSANDS OF PRACTICAL HOUSEKEEPERS, 

READERS OF SUCCESS MAGAZINE, 

AND OTHERS, 

WHOSE DISCOVERIES ARE EMBODIED 

IN THIS VOLUME 



ONE CENT A WORD 

We will pay for new household discoveries, including all practical 

recipes and processes, not contained in this volume, one cent a word 

for all we can use in Success Magazine or in future editions of 

Household Discoveries. Address the author, care of the Success 

Company, Success Magazine Building, New York. Corrections of 

errors or misstatements, utilized by us, will be paid for at the same rate. 

If you have saved money or been otherwise benefited by using one 

of the within recipes, write the author and say so. And contribute 

for the help of others any discoveries that you may have made in 

your own experience. 

The Success Company. 



NOTICE 

Household Discoveries is not offered for sale through the book 
stores, and can oply be obtained of our regular authorized solicitors 
or from the publishers direct. Anyone desiring a copy may address 
the publishers and full information will be given by mail, or one of 
our representatives will be asked to call. We are always in want of 
good canvassing agents. The price of Household Discoveries 
and Success Magazine to the public is so low that it is a ready seller, 
and we will pay the jight men a regular salary. Hence, the work is 
both pleasant and profitable. Experienced agents and those who 
would like to try their ability as salesmen should address the pub- 
lishers for full information. 

The Success Company, 

Success Magazine Building, 

New York City. 



PREFACE 

The main object of this book is economy. If rightly used, it 
will save a great deal of money in every household. It will also 
save time and labor, which are the equivalent of money. 

The publishers have long felt that there is a great need for 
a new book of this sort upon the market. To be sure, there are 
a number of standard dictionaries and encyclopedias of applied 
science. But these cost from five to ten dollars and upward. 
And they contain a great deal of information about commercial 
processes not suitable to household use. There are also a num- 
ber of popular books of recipes published. But most of these 
are old books. Others are made up scrapbook fashion by the 
republication of old material without proper editorial supervision. 

In the course of the preparation of this volume, our atten- 
tion was necessarily called to the fact that a number of so-called 
" new " books republish, word for word, recipes and processes 
that have been formerly published in six or eight other books, 
some of which appeared before the Civil War. Recent science 
has introduced many new substances and processes then unknown. 
All these have been availed of in the present volume. 

. Moreover, the old-fashioned popular book of recipes leaves 
something to be desired in its manner as well as its matter. The 
enormous sale and reputation of a number of old books that 
contain some recipes of great practical value, but accompanied by 
comment which no sane person can possibly read without a sense 
of humor or a feeling of disgust, is the strongest possible evi- 
dence of the value of this kind of information. We believe that 
what has made these old books popular is their practical part 
and not their silly part. We believe that the public will approve 
a volume that sets forth what to do, how to do, and the reasons 
why, in simple, direct, and dignified language, and saves space 
for additional recipes and other information by omitting " horse- 
play " and all unnecessary remarks and commentaries. 

This is a modem book. All who have owned or used one 



22 PREFACE 

of the old-time books of recipes knxiw that hardly a week passes 
that they do not find occasion to refer to it. They wiU, we be- 
lieve, appreciate the importance of having the latest and best 
information along these lines obtainable. Others, who have no 
good collection of this sort, wiU appreciate without argument 
the value of purchasing a new book rather than an old one. 

Thus we feel that there is a universal necessity for Househoi,d 
Discoveries, and we have therefore put the price so low as to 
bring it within the reach of every family, in the confident ex- 
pectation of distributing at least a million copies throughout the 
continent of North America. 

The Publishees. 



INTRODUCTION 

Theee are a number of other books of recipes, but the pres- 
ent volume is unique in three ways: what it contains, what it 
omits, and the way it is arranged. 

WHAT THE BOOK CONTAINS 

As to the first of these three features, the title Household 
Discoveries is suggestive. We all have our own ways of doing 
things. We learn to do by doing. But we are all the time try- 
ing new ways, to save time, to save money, and to do things 
better. Every now and then, through a happy combination of 
circumstances, we make a " Discovery." We hit upon a better 
way than we have known before. Nothing pleases us more than 
to tell our friends about it. They in turn like to tell us ways 
they have discovered to do this or that. Women thus exchange 
household recipes. Men swap ideas on carpentering, painting, 
tinkering, and odd jobs generally. The value of these homely 
ideas thus passing throughout the country, from lip to lip, from 
friend to friend, and from neighbor to neighbor, is enormous. 
Some persons are able to store up large numbers of such practi- 
cal ideas in memory. Others keep notebooks or scrapbooks in 
which to record them. But the stock of most persons is limited 
to a few score or a few hundreds, whereas others, equally good, 
are in existence to the number of many thousands. 

The present volume is made up of practical ideas of this 
character. More than twenty-five thousand persons contributed 
to Success Magazine from one to half a dozen of their own 
tried " Discoveries." All were practical housekeepers. Their 
ideas were the direct product of their experience. They were 
proud of them and they had reason to be. The writer appre- 
ciated to the full the value of this material and obtained per- 
mission to edit it and prepare it for the press. 

Valuable as are the " Discoveries " of practical housekeepers 
in themselves, they have, in their suggestiveness, an added value. 
They show what kind of information housekeepers need and 
want. But they also reveal the fact that many women of great 
practical experience lack scientific knowledge. It has therefore 
been necessary to supplement this wealth of ideas derived from 



24 INTEODUCTION 

experience. And this has been done in two ways: First, the 
discoveries contributed by housekeepers have been carefully 
checked against the best scientific authorities, errors have been 
corrected, impractical ideas discarded. Second, the whole has 
been augmented by the addition of the most approved practical 
and scientific formula;. As a result, it turned out to be neces- 
sary to rewrite the entire volume. 

" Discoveries " are usually how to do this or that. But many 
persons also want to know why. And all can work better if they 
understand the nature and properties of the various substances. 
These are of several sorts. In removing stains and spots, for 
instance, what to do depends upon the kind of fabric, whether 
animal or vegetable fiber; its condition, whether white or colored, 
bleached or unbleached; the nature of the staining substance; 
and the nature of the cleanser to be employed. Hence, the na- 
ture and the properties of the particular kinds of substances in 
common household use are carefully stated. Distinctions are 
made, and closely adhered to, between the treatment of different 
classes of substances, as animal versus vegetable fibers and the like. 
Poisons, explosives, and other dangerous substances are recom- 
mended only with the proper cautions, and aU possible safeguards 
have been thrown about the use, by ordinary persons, of the 
various recipes recommended. 

WHAT THE BOOK OMITS 

The second feature that makes this book unique is what it 
omits. The writer has closely examined about fifty thousand 
recipes contributed by housekeepers, and more than fifty pub- 
lished books of recipes (embracing all that have appeared in 
the English language in the past fifty or sixty years) or a 
total (including duplicates) of nearly one hundred thousand 
recipes. This book contains the cream of them all. It is like 
apple butter boiled down from cider. It is sound wheat winnowed 
free from chaff. It was not necessary to leave out any good 
recipes that were adapted to household use. They are all here. 
Nothing had to be left out but waste words, duplicates (the same 
thing said in another way), gush, and braggadocio. 

A favorite way of padding books of recipes has been to oc- 
cupy more space boasting about the wonders the recipes will 
do than it takes to give the recipe and the directions. Nearly 
half of one of the most celebrated books of recipes is thus 
taken up with " Remarks " that are of no possible use to any- 
body. If the mass of trivialities contained in some of the most 
widely known books of recipes now in use could be struck out 



INTRODUCTION 25 

and the contents " boiled down " or " churned " or " winnowed " 
in a thorough manner, it would surprise everyone to find how 
little space the recipes themselves take up.- 

And a boiled-down book is much more valuable. The recipes 
are still the same and they are a great deal more convenient. By 
thus avoiding unnecessary words, all the best recipes for house- 
hold purposes extant have been combined into one volume. They 
are given on their merits in a plain, direct, and simple way. And 
full information is given in regard to the nature and properties of 
the various substances. Thus anyone can select the bfest recipe 
for a given use, and he will discover its virtues for himself with- 
out paying extra to read about them beforehand. " The proof of ' 
the pudding is in the eating thereof." 

THE WAY IN WHICH THE CONTENTS AEE AURANGED 

The third feature in which this book is unique is the wUy it 
is arranged. The contents are pictorial. Each chapter is a 
picture, or rather a series of moving pictures, from daily life. 
If a moving-picture machine could follow a good housekeeper 
around from morning until night, seven days in the week and 
fifty-two weeks in the year, and then throw the series of pictures 
thus taken upon a screen, the result would be similar to the con- 
tents of this volume. The book goes right with the housekeeper 
when furnishing and decorating all parts of the house, and 
makes a series of pictures that suggest what to do. It gives 
helpful pictures of the best method of heating, lighting, water 
supply, and refrigeration. It goes right through the day's work 
and makes pictures of the different processes, of the kindling and 
care of fires, dishwashing, cleaning lamps, chamber work, and 
preparations for the night. 

It goes through the week's work and makes a picture of get- 
ting ready for wash day by removing spots and stains from the 
linen and by dry cleaning all sorts of fabrics ; of the different 
kinds of soap and how to make them; of wash day, ironing day, 
mending, sweeping and cleaning days, and all of their different 
processes. 

It goes through the year's work also, the spring and fall 
house cleaning; the fight against moths, cockroaches, ants, fieas, 
mosquitoes, flies, rats and mice, and other household pests ; and 
even takes up packing to travel or to move away. 

And on wash day, for example, just when the picture is com- 
plete — including the piles of soiled garments, the utensils of the 
laundry, and the various soaps and other cleansing mixtures — 
all of the recipes are given that can be found in any published 



26 INTRODUCTION 

book of good repute and many " Discoveries " that have never 
been published elsewhere. Thus, a young bride — or an experi- 
enced housekeeper, too, for that matter — can take up the book the 
night before wash day and read over exactly the information 
she will need to put. in practice on the morrow. Or the book 
can be kept at hand in the laundry closet and picked up with 
wet hands if need be. The cover (in one style of binding) is 
made of oilcloth and it will not be damaged in the least. What 
the housekeeper wants to know about any kind of housework can 
be found at the very time she wants it, and all in one place. Con- 
trast with this books that are arranged in a b c order like an 
encyclopedia, and you will see why Household Discoveries is, 
in arrangement, the most practical and convenient book of recipes 
ever published. 

Take, for instance, the family workroom. It is a picture of 
what is needed to make a man handy about the house. Every- 
thing is described in such a simple way that anyone can fix up 
such a workroom and always liave ait hand paste, mucilage, glue, 
and cement for all kinds of uses ; paints and varnishes ; soldering 
tool and solder and other forms of simple metal work ;' oils and 
lubricators ; and all sorts of similar contrivances. Every recipe 
and process is described in the simplest lajiguage. And this part 
of the book alone is worth, to the man of the house, many times 
the cost of the entire volume. It will save the family the price 
of the book several times over every year that it is in the house. 

Upward of one hundred thousand recipes include a great 
many different ways of doing the same things. And by omitting 
all waste words and boiling down everything to the last degree 
it has been possible to include more of these ways than any one 
person would be likely to want. It has seemed best, however, to 
include them all. Circumstances differ. And many men are of 
many minds. From the variety of the recipes given, it is be- 
lieved that any housekeeper or' practical man can, in most cases, 
make up a recipe for a given purpose from what is at hand in 
the house or at any rate what can easily be had in the neigh- 
borhood. And thus the book is adapted to all parts of the coim- 
try, and to the use of every individual and family in the land. 

The Authob,. 



PAQK 



CONTENTS 

CHAPTER I 

HOUSE FURNISHING AND DECORATING 

House Punishing — ^Furniture — Wall Coverings — Floor Cov- 
erings — Curtains, Shades, and Draperies — Miscellaneous 
Objects — ^Living Rooms — Sleeping Rooms — Library — -Dining 
Room — ^Kitchen, Storeroom, and Pantry — Small Economies . 33 

CHAPTER II 

HEATING, LIGHTING, AND REFRIGERATION 

Kinds op Fuel — Heating Systems — Chimneys and Flues — ^Fire 
Extinguishers and Fire Escapes — ^Fireprooping and Water- 

PHOOPING ^ArTTPICIAL ILLUMINATION CoAL GaS, GaSOLINE 

Gas, and Acetylene — ^Kerosene Oil — Candles and Candle 
Making — Industrial Alcohol — Water Supply — ^Ice and Re- 
frigeration . ... 81 

CHAPTER III 

THE DAY'S ROUTINE 

Kindling and Care op Fires — Cleaning and Polishing Stoves 
— Dishwashing — Care op Kitchen Wares — Care op Glass- 
ware AND Cut Glass — Steel Knives and Forks — Care of 
Silverware — Care op Sinks and Disposal of Garbage — 
Chamber Work — -Care op Lamps — ^Preparations fob the 
Night . . . . 123 

CHAPTER IV 

PREPARATIONS FOR WASH DAY 

Solvents for Spots and Stains — Kinds of Spots and Stains — 
Stains on White Linen or Cotton — To Remove Stains from 
Vegetable Fibers — ^To Remove Stains from Animal Fibers — 
To Clean Colored Goods — To Dry-clean Men's Garments 
— ^To Dry-clean Women's Garments — Cleaning and Care 
OP Gloves — ^To Clean Feathers, Furs, and Straw — Bleach- 
ing Vegetable and Animal Fibers 154 

27 



28 CONTENTS 

CHAPTER V 
SOAP AND SOAP MAKING 

PAOB 

Utensils and Materials for Soap Making — Soft Soap — ^ELaed 

Soap — Soda Soaps — Rosin Soap — Special Soaps 186 

CHAPTER VI 

WASH DAY 

The LAtiNDRT — Laundry Utensils — ^Nature or the Process — 
Water for the Latjndry — Labor-saving Methods, Washing 
Fluids, etc. — Colored Goods — Laces and Lace Curtains — • 
Silks and Satin — Woolens, Worsteds, and Flanneis — ^Dry- 
ing Clothes . . 200 

CHAPTER VII 

mONlNG DAY 

Bluing and Sprinkling — Starch and Starching — Care of Iron- 
ing Utensils — Ironing — ^To Do Up Silks, Ribbons, and 
Woolens — ^To Do Up Laces and Curtains — ^To Mark and 
Store Linen .... 222 

CHAPTER VIII 

SEWING AND MENDING DAY 

The Sewing Room — ^Use and Care of Sewing Machine — Sewing- 
room Conveniences — Mending — ^Renovating — Making Over 
— Fancy Work 234 

CHAPTER IX 

SWEEPING DAY 

Utensils for Sweeping — ^Dust and Dusting — Hard-wood Floors 

— Rugs — Matting — Oilcloth and Linoleum .... 250 

CHAPTER X 

HOUSE CLEANING 

Cleaning the Cellar — Cleaning the Attic and Closets — 
Cleaning the Chambers — To Clean Floor Coverings — 
Cleaning and Repinishing Wood Floors — Cleaning Paint 
— Whitewashing — ^Paper Hanging — Care of Walls — ^Win- 



CONTENTS 29 

PAGE 

Dows, Doors, etc. — Cleaning and Care of Furniture — 
Cleaning Picture Frames— Cleaning Bric-a-brac and 
Miscellaneous Objects — ^To Clean Marble, Brick, and 
Stone — Cleaning Kitchen Stoves and Other Metals — 
Packing 260 

CHAPTER XI 

HOUSEHOLD AND GARDEN PESTS 

The Clothes Moth — Carpet Beetle or "Buffalo Moth" — 
The House Centipede — ^The Common Cockroach or Cro- 
ton Bug — ^Thb Bedbug — ^The House Flea — -Rats and Mice — 
Black and Red Ants — ^The White Ant — ^The Common House 
Fly — ^The Mosquito — Orchard, Farm, and Garden Pests 304i 

CHAPTER Xn 

THE FAMILY WORKROOM 

Pakt One — ^Adhesives 
Adhesives — Pastes — Mucilage — Glue — Cement — Special Ad- 

hesives . . 332 

CHAPTER XIII 

THE FAMILY WORKROOM 
Part Two — Paints and Varnishes 
Uses of Paint — Specifications for Painting — Care of Paints 
AND Brushes — Special Kinds of Paint — Varnishing — Fixed- 
oil Varnishes— Spirit or Lac Varnishes — -Volatile-oil 
Varnishes — Special Varnishes — Sealing Wax — Oils, Lu- 
bricators, etc. — Furniture Polish 352 

CHAPTER XIV 

THE FAMILY WORKROOM . 
Past Three — Metal Work 
The Metals and Their Properties — Iron and Steel — Copper 
AND Its Alloys, Brass, Bronze, etc.— Lead and Its Alloys 
— ^Tin and Its Alloys, Solder, etc. — Zinc and Its Alloys 
— ^Nickel and Its Alloys — Aluminum and Its Alloys — An- 
timony AND Its Alloys — Mercury and Its Amalgams — -Coat- 
ing Metals with Other Metals by Electricity and Other- 
wise — Electroplating and Electrotyping — -Lacquer for 
Metals — ^Precious Metals — Gold and Silver .... 383 



30 CONTENTS 

CHAPTER XV 

THE FAMILY WORKROOM 

Part Focb — ^Leather, Ink, and Miscellaneous 

FAOB 

Tanning Leather — Coloring and Care of Leather — Boots 
AND Shoes — Overshoes — Waterproofing Leather— Black- 
ing Leather — Writing Ink — Marking Inks — Colored Inks 
— Special Inks — Care of Ink — Care of Jewelry — Glass 
AND Ivory — Gypsum, Alabaster, etc 415 

CHAPTER XVI 

THE TOILET AND BATH 

The Skin— Baths and Bathing — Kinds of Baths — The Toilet — 

Toilet Soaps — Medicated Soap — The Hands — Manicuring. 438 

CHAPTER XVII 

TOILET PREPARATIONS 

Toilet Preparations — Simple Home Preparations — Almond 
Milk Cream and Paste — Cold Cream — Aromatic Vinegar — 
Toilet Powders — Rouge — ^Essences and Perfumes . . 458 

CHAPTER XVIII 

HAIRDRESSING BOTH FOR MEN AND WOMEN 

Dandruff and Shampooing — Hair Washes — Hair Tonics — Hair 
Oils — Hair Dyes — Other Hair Topics — ^The Beard, Mus- 
tache, AND Shaving — ^Toilet Preparations for Men . . 483 

CHAPTER XIX 
THE TEETH 

The Teeth — Dentifrices — ^The Breath — Toothache — ^Tooth- 
ache Remedies 502 

CHAPTER XX 

CANDIES AND CANDY MAKING 

Kinds of Candies — Boiling Sirup for Candy — ^The Seven 
Degrees — Cream or Fondant — Cream Candies — Fruit and 
Nut Creams— Bonbons — ^Taffy and Molasses Candy for 



CONTENTS 31 

PAGE 

Candt Puus — Sirup Candies — Pastim oh Candy Drops — 
Candied Fruits, Fruit and Nut Candies — ^Caramels — 
Kisses and Marshmaijxjws — ^Nougats — Popcorn Candy — 
Lozenges — Cough Candies — ^To Color and Flavor Candy 
— ^IcES AND Icing — Honey and Beeswax 515 

CHAPTER XXI 

CANNING AND PRESERVING FRUIT 

Canned Goods for Market — Utensils and Materials — Process 
op Canning and Preserving — Pbesekves and Preserving — 
Old-Fashioned Recipes — Miscellaneous Rules and Sug- 
gestions 547 

CHAPTER XXII 

VINEGAR. PICKLES. AND PICKLING 

Special Vinegars — Pickles and Pickling — Mixed Pickles — 

Pickled Vegetables. Nuts, and Fruits 561 

CHAPTER XXIII 

PRESERVATION OF MEAT AND VEGETABLES 

Fermentation — ^Fresh Meat and Fish — Salting and Pickling 
Meat — Cubing Hams, Tongues, and Bacon — Making and 
Keeping Sausage — Preservation of Cooked Meat — ^Trying 
Out and Storing Lard — ^Preserving, Testing, and Packing 
Eggs — Storing and Preserving Vegetables, Fruit, Nuts, 
and Herbs . 587 

CHAPTER XXIV 

WEIGHTS AND MEASURES 

Weights and Measures — Linear or Long Measure — Square or 
Superficial Measure — Surveyors' and Land Measure — 
Cubic or Capacity Measure — -Wood, Lumber and Board 
Measure — Measurement op Stone and Brick — Dry and 
Liquid Measure — Measures op Weight — Cooks' Table op 
Proportions — Circular Measure — Longitude and Time — 
Measures op Value — United States Money — ^English or 
Sterling Money — Metric System of Weights and Measures. 611 



32 CONTENTS 

CHAPTER XXV 

HEALTH HINTS— WHAT TO DO IN EMERGENCY 
Geohge J. Fisher, M.D. 

PAGE 

General Hints in Time or Accident — ^Fihst Aid in Time op Injubt 
— Poisons and their Antidotes — ^Fainting — How to Treat 
A Bruise or Sprain — Treatment of Special Parts — Cuts 
AND Scratches — Poisoned Wounds — ^Poison Ivy and Poison 
Oak — Burns — Bleeding — Dislocations — Fractures — 
Drowning — Prone Pressure Method 645 

CHAPTER XXVI 

WHAT THE HOME NURSE OUGHT TO DO 
Isabel Gordon Curtis 

What an Invalid Mat Eat — ^What an Invalid Mat Drink — 
Proven "Home Remedies" — Hot Weather Care of Infants 
AND Young Children . 660 

Index . . 677 



CHAPTER I 



HOUSE FURNISHING AND DECORATING 



HOUSE FURNISHING— FURNITURE— WALL COVERINGS— FLOOR 
COVERINGS— CURTAINS, SHADES, AND DRAPERIES-MISCEL- 
LANEOUS OBJECTS— LIVING ROOMS-SLEEPING ROOMS— LI- 
BRARY— DINING ROOM— KITCHEN, STOREROOM, AND PANTRY 
—SMALL ECONOMIES 



HOUSE FTTENISHING 

The subject of house furnishing is 
more important than is often realized. 
It has a moral and a social as well as 
an economic side. The relation is 
very close between the character, or 
at least the reputation, of men and 
their surroundings. Everyone is free 
to change his surroundings. Hence 
the furniture and the decorations of 
a house, and the condition of the 
house and grounds, are properly con- 
sidered an index to the character of 
its occupants. 

Furniture, decorations, and other 
surroundings that are disorderly or 
in bad taste tend to keep refined and 
thoughtful people away from such 
homes. They have an even worse ef- 
fect on the character of the inmates. 
Those who live in such circumstances 
become used to them, and no longer 
notice their badness. But the worst 
effect is upon the impressionable minds 
of growing children. Young children 
naturally take their own homes as 
models. What they see in childhood 
tends to fix their standards for life. 
Hence neat, tasteful, and orderly 
homes, but not necessarily expensive 
in their appointments, have a very 
important educational influence. 

The problem of furnishing and 
decorating comes up in two ways: 
originally, as in the formation of a 
new home, in the furnishing of addi- 
tional rooms, or in moving into a new 
and larger dwelling; or, secondarily, 
in refurnishing from time to time, and 
purchasing additions to the family 



stock, usually in' connection with the 
semiannual housecleaning. 

All of these occasions give rise to 
many problems that require good 
judgment. But these can usually be 
referred to a few simple rules that 
are not difficult to imderstand or to 
apply. Styles and fashions in these 
matters change more slowly than some 
other fashions, as in dress; but they 
do change, and while it is proper and 
desirable that the furnishings in the 




"Simplicity, Harmony, and Durability." 

home should be to some extent orig- 
inal and express the individuality of 
its owners, it is natural and conven- 
ient for everyone to conform in a 
general way to the tendencies ,of the 
times in which he lives. Hence it is 
important to know in what direction 
the current of thought is moving, so 
as to keep in advance or abreast of 
it, rather than to lag behind. 
Simplicity, harmony, and durability 



33 



34 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



are the keynotes of the modem tend- 
ency. The general intention seems to 
be to avoid everything that is super- 
fluous, everything that has a tendency 
to catch and hold dust or dirt, or to 
add to the discomforts and dangers 
of dust and dirt by quickly wearing 
out. Hence carpets are being large- 
ly replaced by hard-wood floors and 
rugs; wooden bedsteads, by beds of 
iron or brass; stuffed and upholstered 
furniture, by articles of plain wood 
or wood and leather. Wall papers are 
often discarded for walls tinted or 
calcimined with washable materials. 
" Bric-a-brac," flounces, valances, and 
all other superfluous articles are much 
less fashionable than formerly. 

Good and Bad Taste. — ^The same 
trend can be seen in decoration. Wall 
papers in solid colors, and hard-wood 
floors or solid-colored floor coverings, 
with rugs of Oriental patterns, are 
preferred to the large figured carpets, 
rugs, and wall papers with their so- 
called " cheerful " or bright and con- 
trasted colors. Stuffed plush, and 
other upholstered articles of furniture 




"Much Less Purchased than Formerly. 



in bright colors, or large figured de- 
signs, are being much less purchased 
than formerly. 

All this is a result of the Arts- 
and-Crafts movement originating in 
England with WiUlam Morris, invent- 
or of the Morris chair. A number of 
popular magazines are devoted to 



these and kindred subjects, which oc- 
cupy a good deal of space in general 
periodicals of all classes. 

Formerly there was little oppor- 
tunity for persons in small towns and 
remote rural districts either to be- 
come familiar with the right stand- 
ards or to obtain the more approved 
styles of furniture. But the general 
prosperity of recent years has re- 
sulted in many country homes being 
tastefully and elegantly furnished. 
The possibility of buying desirable 
styles on the mail-order plan has 
forced local dealers to keep better and 
more up-to-date stocks of all house- 
hold articles. Moreover, the great 
demand for simplicity of design has 
reduced the cost. There is now a 
good selection of household furniture 
in the less expensive grades upon the 
same models as the most costly and 
tasteful articles. 

FUEinTTJEE 

Furniture should be chosen for sim- 
plicity and durability. The most 
simple designs are usually the most 
artistic, and the most durable arti- 
cles are likely to be the most san- 
itary. Quiet and subdued colors and 
dull finishes are the most restful and 
generally satisfactory, although the 
high polish of such furniture as ma- 
hogany is preferred by many people. 
To produce a soothing and restful ef- 
fect all the colors in a given room 
should be in harmony. The artistic 
quality that makes an article of fur- 
niture an object of beauty as well as 
of use should be sought in the lines 
of the design itself, rather than in 
additions by way of decoration. Cheap 
furniture stamped with scrolls and 
other designs in imitation of carving 
or the torturing of the natural lines 
of a piece of furniture into various 
fanciful knobs, curves, and scrolls, 
sometimes facetiously called " ginger- 
bread," have little to recommend 
them. The modern Craftsman and 
Mission styles of furniture indicate a 
change in the right direction. Not all 
of these designs are of equal value; 



HOUSE FURNISHING AND DECORATING 



35, 



but for the most part they are simple, 
durable, and derive their beauty from 
their appropriateness and the natural 
lines on which they are constructed. 
Dainty white and gold spider-legged 




"Modem Craftsman^and Mission 



furniture has no place except in draw- 
ing-rooms of wealth and extreme con- 
ventionality. 

Antique Furniture. — The craze for 
second-hand or antique furniture is, 
on the whole, rather absurd. Very 
few persons indeed are able to distin- 
guish a real antique from an imita- 
tion. Dealers in these goods may not 
only willfully deceive, but are often 
deceived themselves by persons who 
have so-called antiques, manufactured 
in America, shipped abroad and re- 
shipped to this country. The wood is 
not infrequently given the appearance 
of age by being buried in the ground, 
eaten with acids, or riddled vrith fine 
shot in imitation of worm holes. 

Even the cloth or leather in which 
the goods are upholstered may be 
given the effect of wear by mechan- 
ical means, and the whole may be 
placed on the market by fraud in 
such a way as to suggest that the 
articles are heirlooms. 

Modern furniture, made on the same 
models, can be obtained at much low- 
er prices, and is much more satisfac- 
tory than these supposed antiques. 



But, as a rule, antique pieces are not 
desirable unless a room can be fur- 
nished with them and can have all its 
appointments in harmony with the 
antique style. 

Furnishing. — William Morris says: 
"Have nothing in your home that. you 
do not know to be useful or believe 
to be beautiful." It is a, good rule in 
furnishing a new home to buy first 
only what is absolutely necessary, and 
not to buy an article that is not im- 
mediately required because it is beau- 
tiful or cheap, or for any other rea- 
son. After living for a while with 
only the few articles that are abso- 
lutely necessary, it will be easier to 
see just wha,t is required that will 
harmonize with the articles already 
purchased and their surroundings and 
help to make a satisfactory whole. 

Moreover, the longer one lives with- 
out unnecessary furnishings the more 
he is likely to appreciate the wisdom 
of simplicity. Every new article pur- 
chased is a new care, and a, few ob- 
jects of good quality in a room give 
a much more elegant effect than a 
large number of less desirable pieces. 
Hence there is no reason why any 
family, whether in the city or the 
country, cannot furnish their home in 
a thoroughly modern way that will 
always be in good taste and will be 
in good style for many years to come. 

Refurnishing. — It would, of course, 
very rarely happen that a family could 
afford or would wish to discard serv- 
iceable articles because they are not 
in good style or good taste according 
to present fashion. But as such arti- 
cles wear out and have to be replaced, 
or as additions are made from time to 
time, it is quite possible to refurnish 
in such a way that in comparatively 
few years the entire contents of the 
home will be modernized. Hence the 
importance of some knowledge of the 
subjects of harmony and color, sim- 
plicity, design, and durability in ma- 
terial and in modes. 

Color Schemes. — The most pleasing 
effects in decoration are obtained by 
treating each room or group of con- 
nected rooms in such a. way as to get 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



a harmonious general effect or color 
scheme. And the color scheme must, 
of course, be chosen with reference to 
the purpose for which the room is 
intended, its shape and size, and the 
amount of sunlight it receives. Rooms 
can be so treated as to seem higher 
or broader than they are, the amount 
of light can be increased or subdued, 
and each room can be given a distinct 
tone and individuality appropriate to 
the uses to which it is put. This way 
of decorating does not necessarily cost 
any more than any other. It merely 
requires some knowledge and skUl that 
can easily be acquired. 

The basis of the color scheme is, of 
course, in the background provided by 
the wall and floor coverings and the 
woodwork. But all the furnishings 
should be selected so as to form, with 
the background, a harmonious whole. 
Hence the subj ect naturally divides it- 
self into the separate topics of wood- 
work, wall coverings, floor coverings, 
and furniture. And the last topic can 
be best taken up in connection with 
each of the different rooms, as the liv- 
ing room, dining room, bedrooms, etc. 

Color and Light. — Some colors re- 
flect a large part of the light that falls 
upon them; others absorb it. The 
various shades of green are the great- 
est thieves of light. A dark-green wall 
will absorb about 85 per cent of the 
light; a dark brown perhaps 70 per 
cent; a light green, SO per cent; an 
orange or yellow, 25 or 30 per cent; 
light blue, 35 per cent; and soft, deli- 
cate tints about 10 per cent. But of 
course these figures are only approxi- 
mate. Pure white absorbs about 15 
per cent of the light thrown upon it. 
Hence suitable color schemes for rooms 
facing south that need toning down 
are greens or the dull shades of blue, 
^cru, or tan. 

For rooms facing west the lighter 
shades of green, with rose, terra cotta, 
or white, are appropriate. White 
enamel furniture with brass trimmings 
is suitable for such apartments. 

North and east rooms require warm 
tones of yellow, with which yellow oak 
furniture harmonizes, or warm shades 



of red, which harmonizes with Mission 
oak. 

Most men would agree to Eugene 
Field's remark that " almost any color 
suited him, so long as it was red." 
Hence red is a suitable color for the 
furnishing of a man's room or den. 

For the dining room, provided it is 
a bright, sunny room, a suitable color 
is blue or grayish blue, harmonizing 
with the tones of delft china. Or, if 
the dining room is less well lighted, a 
rich warm tone of yellow gives a sun- 
ny atmosphere to the room. But avoid 
yellow of a greenish or lemon cast. 

For the hall, a suitable color is 
green. And for the living room, green 
or a warm shade of russet brown, to 
harmonize with the green of the haU. 

Bedrooms should be preferably in 
light and delicate colors. 

WALL COVEBIirOS 

The materials commonly used for 
wall coverings are chiefly of three 
sorts, paper, cloth, and paint, or 
washes applied direct to the waUs. 
The last method is much more gen- 
erally used than formerly. Wall pa- 
pers are cheaper but less durable than 
cloth. Suitable tints and stains in 
water colors and calcimine are cheaper 
than either, and also more durable. 

Wall Papers. — Perhaps the com- 
monest wall coverings are the wall 
papers of various grades, from the 
ordinary wood-pulp paper costing but 
a few cents a roll, to the highest 
grades of cartridge, ingrain, or duplex 
papers, imitations of leather, and 
other specialties. 

Wall papers are very cheap, and 
anyone can readily learn how to hang 
them. Hence there is no reason why 
rooms should not be repapered as 
often as is necessary to keep them 
fresh and clean. 

Wall papers are especially suitable 
to walls that are rough or uneven, and 
to walls of houses that are not suffi- 
ciently weU built. By suitable treat- 
ment paper can be hung on almost 
any wall, and it assists in keeping the 
rooms tight and warm. 



HOUSE FURNISHING AND DECORATING 



sr 



Colors and Patterns. — The plain 
cartridge, ingrain, or duplex papers in 
solid colors are the most approved and 
among the most satisfactory wall pa- 
pers, especially for living rooms in 
general use. The absence of any pat- 
tern or design brings out in full relief 
the pictures upon the walls and other 
ornaments, and helps to give a quiet 
air of luxury to the apartment. But 
these are somewhat more expensive 
than ordinary waU papers, and require 
a smoother wall surface and better 
care in hanging. The edges must be 
trimmed on both sides and "butted," 
or brought together side by side, tight 
enough not to show the wall between 
them, instead of being overlapped, as 
with ordinary papers. Otherwise the 
thickness of the paper would make a 
ridge which, on account of the solid 
color, would be plainly visible. This 
requires some skiU, but with a, little 
practice can be done by anyone. The 
edge should be trimmed with a sharp 
knife by means of a straightedge 
rather than with shears. 

Next to the ingrain papers, the two- 
toned or double-toned papers, having 
a subdued pattern in another shade or 
tint of the same color as the ground- 
work, are preferred for the living 
room. 

Good taste demands the selection of 
a paper having a comparatively small 
and simple design, and without large 
figures or striking and glaring con- 
trasts of color. Large-figured papers 
deprive pictures and other ornaments 
of all artistic effect and make the wall, 
which should be merely a background, 
stand out obtrusively. 

How to Choose Wall Paper. — The 
effect of wall papers cannot be weU 
judged from small samples. Hence 
when possible choose from the stock 
itself and have two or three widths 
unrolled side by side to get the gen- 
eral effect. Remember that vertical 
stripes make a room seem higher than 
it is, that large figures and dark col- 
ors make It seem smaller, and that a 
simple design in natural outlines, as 
a landscape or flowers and foliage, has 
perspective and tends to give an effect 



of greater width. Hence it may be 
suitable for halls or narrow apart- 
ments. 

Figured papers in dainty patterns, 
as poppies, roses, or other natural 
blossoms, are more suitable for bed- 
rooms than for living rooms. They 
can be selected to suit almost any kind 
of color scheme. Solid colors seem to 
make the walls retire; hence they give 
the effect of broadening and enlarging 
the apartment. This is especially true 
of the lighter shades. Mother Goose 
and other figured papers in suitable 
designs may be had for children's 
rooms and nurseries, imitation leather 
for dining rooms and halls, and water- 
proof oilcloth papers for bathrooms, 
kitchens, etc. 

Ceilings. — ^Various desirable effects 
may be produced in wall coverings by 
the treatment of the ceiling. Low 
rooms may be given an effect of great- 
er height by the use of a two-toned 
paper in narrow, vertical stripes, car- 
ried clear to the ceiling without a 




" Veriical Stripes Carried Clear to the Ceiling." 



border, and by fastening the picture 
molding as close to the celling as it 
will go. On the other hand, rooms 
that are too narrow in proportion to 
other dimensions may be given a bet- 
ter effect by lowering the picture 
molding one to two feet or more and 
papering up to the molding, but not 
above, the upper part (fi the wall be- 
ing whitewashed or calcimined in the 
same materials as the ceiling. 
Ceilings that have rough or crooked 



38 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



places which cannot be repaired may 
be hung with a paper of the same 
quality as the walls, but usually of a 
lighter tint. The border may be put 
on around the edge of the ceiling in- 
stead of aroimd the top of the wall, 
thus giving the room the effect of 
greater height. 

Or ceilings may be whitewashed or 
calcimined, or tinted with water col- 
ors, with or without stenciled borders 
or frescoes. 

Dadoes. — The effect of any room may 
be improved by a chair rail around the 
walls three feet from the floor. Suit- 
able material can be procured from 
dealers in picture moldings. This will, 
of course, be painted the same color 
as the woodwork. 

On the wall below hang cotton or 
linen cloth previously painted with 
boiled linseed oil and well dried, or 
cheap ingrain paper, and when dry 
paint this wall covering the same color 
as the woodwork. 

Or this dado may be developed with 
picture molding, the corners being 
mitered the same as picture frames. 
With the aid of a homemade miter- 
box anyone who is handy with tools 
can do this work. 

Test for Wall Paper. — To test green 
wall paper for the presence of arsenic 
in dangerous quantities dip a sample 
in aqua ammonia. If arsenic is pres- 
ent, the paper will turn from green 
to blue. 

Or light a piece of the paper with 
a match, and when burning briskly 
blow it out. The presence of arsenic 
may be detected by an odor similar to 
that of garlic. 

Wall Coverings — Cloth. — ^Various 
grades of prepared cloth wall cover- 
ings are obtainable, as silk, linen, and 
burlap. These are more expensive 
than paper, and are objected to by 
some on the ground that they catch 
dust and are unsanitary, unless regu- 
larly swept and dusted every day. But 
these materials when of good quality 
are very durable, and furnish perhaps 
the most artistic of all backgrounds 
for pictures and other decorations. 
Burlap is more suitable for outer halls 



or rooms furnished with heavy oak or 
Mission furniture. Silks and linens 
harmonize with mahogany and with 
the lighter and more graceful furni- 
ture of parlors and drawing-rooms. 

To Color Walls. — The Arts-and- 
Crafts movement is introducing the 
custom of tinting walls in waterproof 




'Stencil Added Above. 



colors without the use of cloth or pa- 
per hangings, either in solid colors or 
with the addition of designs by means 
of stencils. The wall is usually tinted 
in a solid color, and the stencil added 
above the picture molding by way of 
border. 




" Protected by Means of a Dado." 

Or the walls may be painted for 
half or two thirds of their height and 



HOUSE FURNISHING AND DECORATING 



39 



sanded and tinted above, a light 
tnolding of simple design being used 
to divide the two surfaces. The 
molding should be painted the same 
color as tlie woodworls:. 

Or a chair rail and painted dado 
may be used, and the walls tinted 
above. 

Stairways. — Paper for stairways 
may be the same as the hall paper. 
It often becomes soiled along the bot- 
tom, and may be protected by means 
of a dado \ about three feet high car- 
ried around the hall and up the 
stairway, and surmounted by a light 
wooden molding painted to corre- 
spond to the adjacent woodwork^ 

FLOOB COVSIIINOS 

The principal kinds of floor cover- 
ings in common use are rugs of vari- 
ous kinds, both Oriental and domes- 
tic; carpets, and oilcloths, including 
linoleum. Of carpets, the most im- 
portant in the order of their value 
and desirability are Chenille Axmin- 
ster, Wilton Axminster, Moquette, 
Velvet, Brussels, Tapestry Brussels, 
Ingrain or Kidderminster, two or 
three ply, Venetian, and old-fash- 
ioned rag carpet. 

Chenille Axminster is an imported 
carpet, consisting of worsted chenille 
woven in strips upon a jute backing. 
It comes three fourths of a yard wide 
in rolls, and may also be obtained in 
whole rugs or carpets specially de- 
signed for any kind of room. These 
are imported, principally from Scot- 
land. 

Domestic Axminster and UCoquette 
are much alike. They have a thick, 
high, tufted pile, which is very dur- 
able. The Axminster is usually of 
better material and construction than 
the Moquette. The groundwork of 
these carpets is jute or cotton. The 
pile consists of tufts of soft woolen 
yarn fastened upon the groundwork 
so as to make the design. As each 
color in the design of these carpets is 
furnished from a separate roll, acting 
independently, any number of colors 
may be employed. Hence the most 



elaborate patterns and shadings of 
color may be had in these carpets. 

Wilton and Brussels are made upon 
a groundwork of linen with a face of 
worsted in raised loops. In Brus- 
sels carpet these loops remain uncut, 
whereas in Wilton they are cut and 
the pile is sheared smooth. These 
loops are formed of woolen threads of 
continuous colors which, to form the 
design, are thrust through the warp 
threads at intervals by means of wires. 
As each color comes to the surface 
independently of the others, the de- 
signs are exceptionally clear and per- 
fect, but the number of threads that 
can be employed conveniently is lim- 
ited; hence there are fewer colors and 
much less shading in these carpets 
than in Axminster or Moquette. 

Velvet and Tapestry Brussels are 
constructed on the same principle as 
Wilton and Brussels, except that the 
worsted threads which form the sur- 
face are not of continuous colors, but 
have the colors forming the design 
printed upon them before the fabric 
is woven; hence, without any addi- 
tional expense, any number of colors 
may be employed. For this reason 
the designs of Velvet and Tapestry 
Brussels are much more elaborate in 
color and shading than the Wilton or 
Brussels carpets. Tapestry carpets 
are more commonly used than any 
other kind except Ingrains, and hence 
they give rise in this country to the 
most important branch of carpet 
manufacture. , 

Ingrain or Kidderminster carpet is 
the only kind of which both warp and 
woof is of wool. Hence it may be 
turned and worn on either side, al- 
though it shows a right and a wrong 
side in point of color. Its name of 
" Kidderminster " is derived from the 
city in which it was formerly manu- 
factured on a large scale. The names 
"Ingrain" and "three-ply" arise from 
the fact that there are two grades, 
one of which consists of two layers 
interwoven or " ingrained " to cause 
the colors of the design to change or 
mingle, whereas the other has three 
layers similarly put together. 



40 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



Venetian is made on a coarse 
ground of hemp filling with a woolen 
warp. It usually comes in stripes and 
is largely manufactured for stair cov- 
erings. 

Oilcloth consists of a foundation of 
burlap covered with a number of coat- 
ings of coarse paint. The pattern is 
printed on the surface with wooden 
blocks, one for each color. Oilcloth 
may be obtained in any width from 
three feet to twenty-four feet, but is 
ordinarily sold in narrow widths and 
medium weights. 

In purchasing oilcloth first look at 
the back and choose a grade of cloth 
the background of which is closely 
woven. Next see that the coating of 
paint is of good weight or thickness, 
and choose a cloth having a smooth 
surface rather than one which is 
coarse or has a raised pattern. These 
portions are the first to wear. 

Oilcloth improves with age as the 
paint hardens; hence select, if pos- 
sible, a piece which has been a long 
time in stock. 

Iiinolenm is a coined word for a 
floorcloth consisting of a mixture of 
oxidized linseed oil and pulverized 
cork. This is laid upon a foundation 
of coarse burlap and made to adhere 
by pressure. Linoleum was invented 
by ah Englishman, William Walton, 
and was formerly sold at rather high 
prices on account of a monopoly in 
the use of the patents in the United 
States. The patents have now expired 
and linoleum is being sold in competi- 
tion with oilcloths for floor coverings. 
It presents a better appearance, is 
much more durable, and hence is 
cheaper in the long run. Oilcloths 
and linoleums, if of good quality and 
properly laid, are perhaps the best of 
all floor coverings for kitchen, pantry, 
laundry, or any other room where wet 
or greasy substances are likely to be 
spiUed or where there is a great deal 
of wear. A good grade of linoleum in 
a solid color also makes a desirable 
background for Oriental or other rugs 
as a substitute for a hard-wood floor. 

To Lay Oilcloth. — The floors of 
many rooms, especially in houses that 



have been standing for many years, 
become very rough. The cracks widen, 
and some boards wear or settle more 
than others, making the surface un- 
even. This condition presents two 
difficulties: the cracks admit draughts 
from beneath, and the sharp and un- 
even edges wear the floor coverings. 
Linoleums and oilcloths being stiff 
and brittle are especially liable to 
wear and break along these cracks; 
hence, before laying these floor 
coverings, put down a number of 
thicknesses of newspapers. These 
will also prevent the floor covering, 
when heated by the sun or by the 
heat of a stove, from sticking to the 
floor. 

Or use carpet felt or carpet linings 
obtainable from dealers for this pur- 
pose. 

Or cover the floor evenly with saw- 
dust by working it into the cracks as 
much as possible. 

Or spread over the floor a rather 
thick coating of fine dry sand. 

Any of these methods makes a solid 
filling that increases the life of the 
oilcloth many years. 

To Varnish Oilcloths. — Oilcloth and 
linoleum may be much improved in 
appearance, and also indefinitely pre- 
served by an occasional coat of var- 
nish. To apply a fresh coat once in 
three months is not too often. This 
freshens the colors, prevents the oU- 
cloth from cracking, and, by lessening 
friction, makes it much easier to clean. 
If linoleum is used as a background 
for rugs in bedrooms or living rooms 
it may be painted, in imitation of va- 
rious colors of wood, with any of the 
modern varnish paints which contain 
stains, and dry with a smooth, glossy 
surface. When so treated a good lino- 
leum makes an imitation of a hard- 
wood floor, which can hardly be ex- 
celled either for beauty or durability. 
It is especially useful in those cases 
where a large rug is used for the cen- 
ter of the room with an open border 
about it. It is, of course, much bet- 
ter in such cases to cover the entire 
room with linoleum, and to lay the 
rug upon this. 



HOUSE FURNISHING AND DECORATING 



41 



To Renew Linoleum. — Old pieces of 
linoleum may often be made as good 
as new by first washing them with a 
strong solution of sal soda, ammonia, 
and soapsuds to remove the original 
color. Then apply a coat of any good 
light-colored paint, and lay over this 
any desired color of varnish paint in 
imitation of the woodwork. Instruc- 
tions as to what paint to use may be 
had from the dealers. Always allow 
' paint and varnish to become thor- 
oughly dry and hard before walking 
upon it. 

Use of Floor Coverings. — Floor cov- 
erings doubtless originated in the use 
by our primitive ancestors of the skins 
of animals as rugs, and the earliest 
floor coverings used by civilized na- 
tions were in the form of rugs. This 
usage still continues in the Orient. 

The later custom of manufacturing 
carpets and other floor coverings in 
long, narrow strips, to be joined to- 
geth'er, grew out of the desire to 
cheapen the process of manufacture 
by adapting the size of the fabrics to 
the uses of the loom. The custom of 
covering the entire floor of a room 
with carpet or other floor covering 
doubtless arose, in great degree, from 
the desire to cover cracks, knots, and 
other unsightly defects in cheap and 
badly made floors, to prevent soft- 
wood floors from wearing, and also to 
lessen draughts from the cracks be- 
tween floor boards. 

The present tendency among well- 
to-do people is back to the original 
idea of scattering rugs upon a smooth, 
polished surface. The ideal floor is 
undoubtedly of hard wood, properly 
laid and highly polished. This is the 
most sanitary, durable, and beautiful 
of all floors. It is the easiest to clean, 
and furnishes an ideal foundation as 
a basis for any interior decoration. 
The growing wealth of farmers as a 
class throughout the great central 
West and elsewhere, by reason of im- 
proved machinery and modern scien- 
tific methods of agriculture, has re- 
sulted in the building and furnishing 
of many homes having floors of this 
sort in the smallest towns and rural 



districts throughout the United States. 
Moreover, modern means of transpor- 
tation, as trolley systems, interurhaij 
electric railways, automobiles, and the 
upbuilding of local telephone systems, 
have promoted the building in rural 
neighborhoods of a vast number of 
summer homes. There is hardly a 
community in the United States where 
modern houses constructed with pol- 
ished hard-wood floors and furnished 
with Oriental or domestic rugs as floor 
coverings is not to be seen. 

Another great educator has been the 
periodicals devoted to home making 
and especially catering to the class of 
suburban residents above mentioned. 
These models have set the fashion 
for bare floors and rugs, and there is 
no doubt but that as time goes on 
this custom will become increasingly 
popular. 

Hard-wood floors may be laid under 
certain conditions over old floors, and 
be all the better for having another 
flooring beneath them, but they are 
somewhat expensive. Hence numerous 
ingenious methods have been used to 
secure the same result by imitation. 

To Imitate Hard-wood Floors. — Ob- 
tain a suitable hard-wood filler, and 




"Apply a Good Stain." 

press it into the cracks in the floor 
according to directions. Take care to 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



smooth the filler exactly level after 
the cracks have been filled. When this 
substance hardens, the floor will be 
smooth and even, and all danger from 
draughts will be permanently done 
away. Next apply a good stain of 
any desired color to match the wood- 
work, or apply a suitable paint mixed 
with varnish that will dry, leaving a 
hard, smooth, glossy surface. 

Soluble Glass for Eloors. — Instead 
of the old-fashioned method of using 
wax for polished floors, etc., soluble 
glass is now employed to great advan- 
tage. For this purpose the floor is 
first well cleaned, and then the cracks 
are weU filled up with a cement of 
water glass and powdered chalk or 
gypsum. Afterwards a water glass of 
60° to 65°, of the thickness of sirup, 
is applied by means of a stiff brush. 
Any desired color may be imparted to 
the floor in a second coat of the water 
glass, and additional coats given until 
the requisite polish is obtained. A 
stUl higher finish may be given by 
pumicing off the last layer, and then 
putting on a coating of oil. 

Or denim of good quality in solid 
colors may be laid upon the floor as a 
background for the rugs. But when 
this material is used the rugs must be 
large enough and numerous enough to 
cover most of the surface and receive 
the greater part of the wear. 

Or use heavy building paper pasted 
smoothly to the floors, and apply to 
this two or more coats of varnish 
paint. This material wears well and 
presents a good appearance. 

Or heavy unbleached cotton or denim 
may be treated by tacking it against a 
building or laying it on a floor which 
is not in use, and applying with a 
paint brush one or two coats of lin- 
seed oil. After this is dry, apply a 
coat of varnish or "lac" paint, let 
dry and apply a second coat. After- 
wards apply a coat of varnish. Let 
the cloth dry thoroughly before using. 
This is a good and cheap substitute 
for oilcloth and linoleum for kitchen 
floors and all other purposes. 

Or matting may be used, especially 
in bedrooms, sewing room, sitting 



room, and even in the parlor if the 
rugs are of the right size and number 
and of sufBciently good quality. 

Or the floor may be covered, espe- 
cially in the sitting room, where there 
is more or less tracking in of mud 
and dirt, and in bedrooms, with a 
good quality of linoleum, wiiich may 
be stained and painted in imitation 
of a hard-wood floor, or to correspond 
with the woodwork. 

The great advantage offered by the 
bare wood or a smooth surface such 
as linoleum is that it can be readily 
kept clean and free from dust, dirt, 
and all sorts of vermin. Rugs may 
be taken up and beaten out of doors 
and thoroughly aired on the line, and 
every particle of dust and dirt can be 
readily removed by wiping over the 
floor with a damp cloth drawn bag 
fashion over the head of a broom. 
Good rugs, both Oriental and domes- 
tic, are no more expensive than the 
same grades of carpet, and their use 
is to be decidedly recommended for 
artistic and sanitary reasons as well 
as from a labor-saving standpoint. 

Denim. — ^Denim is perhaps the most 
generally popular floor covering as a 
background for rugs when cost is 
taken into account. But it is not, of 




(|S!|i ll! ill :iiui I! F' 
!t,« it. ii : ii ■ 'I >i 1 






ll(f 



k 



m 







"Fitting . . . Transformed into Rugs." 

course, as durable as carpet, and does 
not come in fast colors. When partly 
worn, however, denim may be woven 
into rugs or converted into carpet rags. 
Filling. — An aU-wool ingrain "fill- 
ing" in greens and other solid colors 
is another popular floor covering much 
used as a background for rugs. This 
is very durable, but like denim tends 
to fade in comparatively few years, 
and must then be redyed or trans- 
formed into rugs. 



HOUSE FURNISHING AND DECORATING 



43 



To Choose Carpets.— The effect of 
design in carpets is much the same as 
in wall paper. Large patterns tend 
to make a room seem small, and bor- 
ders about the carpet have the same 
effect. The present tendency favors 
carpets in solid colors or having small 
and delicate patterns. Large patterns 
and all sorts of glaring contrasts of 
color should be avoided. Both very 
dark and very light carpets are diffi- 
cult to keep clean, and carpets con- 
taining blue, green, or other delicate 
colors, when exposed to simlight, tend 
to fade. 

As to color, carpets should, of 
course, harmonize with the general 
color scheme of the room. But as 
they cannot be changed as frequently 
as the wall coverings, they should, as 
a rule, be in neutral colors that will 
harmonize with almost any other 
scheme that may be adopted. 

A point in favor of carpets having 
small patterns is that the two webs of 
which the carpet consists are much 
inore closely interwoven if the design 
is small than if the pattern is a large 
one. Hence the carpet having a small 
design is likely to be more durable. 
Moreover, where there are no large 
patterns to attract the eye the results 
of wear are not so noticeable. 

As to material, ingrain or three-ply 
carpets being of wool and capable of 
being turned and worn on both sides, 
probably give most wear for the 
money of any carpets on the market. 
But Brussels and tapestry carpets, 
which are somewhat more expensive, 
are also, on account of their beauty 
and excellent wearing qualities, in 
very general use. 

Rag Carpet. — This is the cheapest 
carpet of all and can readily be made 
on a hand loom at home. It makes a 
thi^ and serviceable covering for the 
floors of kitchen or living rooms in 
winter. To make rag carpet, use a 
warp of strong cotton thread, and 
weave in any kind of rags twisted 
into small rolls. 

To Color Bag-carpet Warp. — First 
use a strong cotton yarn reeled into 
skeins of five knots. About one skein 



to the yard of carpet will be required, 
with about three knots additional for 
binding at the end of each breadth. 

For tan color first soak the warp 
thoroughly with lime water; next boil 
it in a brass or copper kettle in a 
strong solution of extract of hemlock 
bark in water. This is used by tan- 
ners for making leather, and may be 
obtained through a tanner or dealer 
i> dye stuff. 

For black color soak the warp in 
strong copperas water instead of lime 
water, and use iron or tin vessels in- 
stead of brass or copper. Afterwards 
boil in the hemlock solution. 

For slate color use weaker solu- 
tions of copperas and hemlock. 

For brown use a weak solution of 
copperas and a strong solution of 
hemlock. Thus, by a little experi- 
menting, the shades of color may be 
varied at will. 

Carpet Bags. — The contents of the 
rag bag should be first picked over, 
and rags intended to be used as car- 
pet rags should be washed and ironed 
and afterwards ripped apart. Seams 
and worn spots should be rejected. 
They should then be sorted according 
to the colors of materials, and if not 
needed at once, stored away for fu- 
ture use in paper bags. Woolen rags 
should be protected against moths by 
pasting the tops otthe bags together. 

Rags of fast and satisfactory col- 
ors need not be dyed. But better 
effects may often be obtained by dye- 
ing all rags to suitable colors. 

To cut carpet rags, trim around the 
outside of the rag, clipping off square 
corners, and continue cutting round 
and round until the rag is all cut up. 
By this means small pieces may be 
utilized, the rags will be of satisfac- 
tory length, and will require less sew- 
ing. Cotton rags and rags of fine 
dress goods make a smoother and bet- 
ter-looking carpet than rags of heavy 
woolen colors. Hence the latter had 
better be kept separate and made 
into rugs or kitchen carpets. 

The quantity of rags required for a 
carpet may be estimated by weight. 
For each yard one and one half to two 



44 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



pounds of rags, depending upon the 
material, will be required. In sewing, 
it is better to mix the different shades 
of the same color so that the stripes 
will be of an even and uniform shade. 
Thus the breadths will present the 
same appearance. But if the pepper- 
and-salt pattern is desired all the 
colors may be mixed together. For 
this kind of carpet short pieces may 
be utilized. Rag carpets also come 
by the piece and may be bought in 
shops by the yard, the same as others. 
But when made at home or woven to 
order they can be ordered to fit the 
room, the breadths being made exact- 
ly to measure and bound up at the 
ends. Allowance in ordering should 
be made for shrinkage, as the breadths 
tend to become a little shorter and 
wider with wear. 

To Cut Carpets. — Before cutting a 
new carpet, unroll a little more than 
twice the length of the room, double 
this in the middle so that the edges 
will come side by side, and work it 
back and forth so as to match the 
pattern at a length a little longer than 
that of the room. The required num- 
ber of strips can thus be cut in such a 
way that the pattern wUl be matched 
exactly without waste. 

Try both ways on the floor before 
cutting, as it may be more economical 
to cut the lengths for the short way 
of the floor. Any pieces wasted in 
matching the pattern may be used to 
make rugs or foot stools, or to fill in 
recesses. 

To Sew Carpets. — Sew with the 
through-and-through stitch, very close 
together. 

Straw Hatting. — ^When purchasing 
straw matting it is advisable to buy 
the best grade of fine white or unfig- 
nred matting for all rooms alike; thus 
as it wears out it can be readily 
matched or replaced by putting good 
matting from two rooms together in 
one. 

Matting Rugs. — Cut suitable lengths 
of matting and hem with twine string 
for use as summer rugs. Two or more 
breadths may be attached together if 
desired to make wide rugs. Use plain, 



or apply paint, or stain of any desired 
color. A large square rug can be 
made in this way to occupy the center 
of the floor, a border being made by 
painting or staining the floor, or cov- 
ering with green denim or drugget. 

Rag Rugs. — Very durable and use- 
ful rugs may be made of all sorts of 
old rags in the same fashion as a rag 
carpet, or by braiding, or they may be 
knitted or drawn through burlap or 
canvas as in embroidery. Small pieces 
maybe utilized by commencing at one 
side and cutting the width of a car- 
pet rug almost to the end, then turn- 
ing a corner and cutting along the 
side, and so going around the outside 
until the piece is cut up. After clip- 
ping off the square corners the rag 
will be found to be of convenient 
length. Carpet rags should be wound 
into balls of uniform size. They catch 
less dust, and do not become tangled. 
When ready to tack them, have a sew- 
ing bee, or run them up on the sewing 
machine. This will enable you to do 
them very quickly. 

Old stocking legs make especially 
pretty rugs. 

To Make Drawn Rugs. — First pre- 
pare a frame by nailing together four 
pieces of lathe or other light pine 
stuff, and stretch on this a piece of 
strong burlap or coarse canvas. Pre- 
pare the rags by cutting them in a 
uniform width of one half inch or less, 
and wind each color in a separate ball. 
Draw the rags through the burlap by 
means of a hook, that can be extem- 
porized from a piece of wire. Insert 
the hook from above between the warp 
and woof of the burlap, and draw the 
rag up from below so as to form 
loops projecting at imiform heights 
above the burlap. This is the prin- 
ciple upon which Axminster carpet is 
made. A design may be traced on 
the burlap by means of chalk or char- 
coal, and the outlines drawn with two 
or three rows of rags in different col- 
ors. A little experience will indicate 
how closely together to draw the loops, 
which should project a half inch or 
less above the burlap. If desired, the 
loops may afterwards be clipped, as 



HOUSE FUENISHING AND DECORATING 



45 



is done with the Wilton carpets, by 
means of a sharp pair of scissors. 

CTTBTAINS, SHADES, AITD DBAFEBIES 

The use of curtains originated be- 
fore the invention of glass, when win- 
dows were either open or imperfectly 
protected against draughts. They 
originally hung straight down across 
the sash. 

At present the object of window 
shades and curtains is primarily to 
regulate the amount of light in the 
room, and to screen the interior, when 
desired, from observation from with- 
out. It is a prime rule of good taste 
in decoration that it must not be al- 
lowed to interfere with the purpose 
for which a thing is intended. Hence 
curtains and draperies that cannot be 
drawn aside to admit the light, or let 
fall to exclude it, are objectionable. 
Curtains for French windows should 
be arranged with cords and pulleys 
so as to be brought out of the way 
when the windows are opened, or ad- 
justed on rods long enough so that 
they can be drawn to one side. 

Window Curtains. — Some city 
houses have three or four sets of 




"Simpler Mdhcds . . . Are Gaining Favor." 



curtains, but the simpler methods of 
country houses are gaining in favor. 
One set is sufficient, and more than 



two are undesirable. A thin semi- 
transparent curtain of lace, net, or 
muslin, in white or 6cvu, may be used 
next the glass. This may either be 
crossed at the top and hang straight 
down or be draped at the middle sash 
with a band. This is a question of 
taste and depends upon the propor- 
tions of the room and the window. 
When an inner curtain of heavy ma- 
terial is used the lace or net curtain 
should usually be draped to soften the 
outlines. Lace or net curtains are 
usually, but not always, used down- 
stairs, and less expensive curtains of 
muslin are used for bedrooms and 
other upstairs windows. 

Materials for Window Curtains. — 
Lace curtains may be purchased ready 
made. Or curtains may be made of 
bobbinet or similar material and edged 
with ruffles or suitable lace. Or Cluny 
lace may be used by way of insertion. 
Plain scrim, with no other decoration 
than hemstitched hems, makes hand- 
some curtains. They launder easily 
and well. If they bleach with, time 
they can be restored to their original 
color by being dipped in dilute coffee. 
The best materials for bedrooms are 
dotted Swiss or other muslins. Other 
serviceable materials are India linen, 
Aberdeen linen, Persian cotton, cre- 
tonnes, and linen taffetas. The reps 
of various fabrics — cotton, wool, and 
silk — all hang well and are soft and 
graceful. 

Any suitable material may be scal- 
loped along the edge by means of a 
tumbler. Mark around this with chalk 
or pencil. Buttonhole the scallop^ and 
work in them polka dots or other sim- 
ple design. 

Muslin Curtains. — For bedroom 
curtains it pays to buy various cotton 
materials like dimity and muslin by 
the piece, and to make them all the 
same style. It is wise to keep to the 
same pattern, as dots or small rings, 
and to buy new pieces the same as 
the old, or as nearly so as they can be 
matched. Then new curtains can be 
used with the old. As the curtains 
begin to wear they can be put to- 
gether as pairs, or changed from 



46 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



room to room as long as any two are 
left 

Or when curtains from the living 
rooms wear on the edges, trim them 
off, hem them neatly, and turn the 
edged border toward the sash. They 
will make good curtains for bedrooms 
or other inconspicuous windows that 
will l^st for years. 

Dyeing Curtains. — All cotton mate- 
rials can be readily dyed by dipping 
them in dye stuff after they have been 
washed and rinsed in the laundry. 
Thus the curtains can be made to 
conform to any desired color shade. 

Cheese cloth when dyed in suitable 
colors makes pretty and inexpensive 
curtains. Hemmed bands or borders 
of striped silkoline or other suitable 
material add a decorative effect. Dark 
green trimmed with a stripe in Orien- 
tal design and coloring makes a very 
pretty curtain. 

Or take cheese cloth or unbleached 
sheeting which may be any old mate- 
rial as old sheets, from which pieces 
of suitable size can be cut for cur- 



i°?r 



iMiniiniiw 




'Decorative Border in OilPairds: 



tains, and dye them in any suitable 
shade. White cotton dipped in a deep 
brown dye and afterwards in a deep 
green gives a beautiful gray-green 
color. 

Or unbleached cotton sheeting can 
be stenciled or hand painted with a 
decorative border in oil paints thinned 
slightly with turpentine, and thus 
given a very artistic effect. Cut the 
curtain wide enough so that the inner 



edge of each pair may be turned over 
eight inches. Fold this strip top and 
bottom into squares. Mark the squares 
by means of a stencil and paint any 
design to form the border. 

To Hang lace Curtains. — To hang 
lace curtains without assistance, first 
adjust the pole; throw the top of the 
curtain loosely over the pole; then, by 
means of a common pin or tack, fas- 
ten each scallop to the skirting board 
just above the carpet or along the 
floor. The curtain may then be drawn 
up rather firmly over the pole so that 
when the pins are removed the cur- 
tain wiU have been stretched just 
enough to lift it off the floor. This, 
without jumping down to look, in- 
sures the curtain hanging evenly. 

To Mend lace Curtains. — To mend 
delicate lace and net curtains when 
they first show a tear, take very fine 
thread and a hook and fill up the 
space with a single crochet stitch. 
When laundered the mend will defy 
detection. 

Or when lace curtains are much 
worn, take one or two of the worst 
for patches, and after the others are 
laundered cut a patch to match the 
design of the torn part, dip it in thick 
starch, lay it carefully over the rent, 
and iron it down. The starch will 
cause it to adhere until the curtains 
are laundered again. Strips of net or 
illusion may also be used in the same 
way. 

Sash Curtains. — Use partly worn 
muslin or silk curtains for sash cur- 
tains. The tops and bottoms of old 
curtains that have not had the direct 
rays Of the sun will usually be found 
best for sash curtains. The middle 
part can be discarded. Make a wide 
hem top and bottom through which to 
run the rod. A wide hem is not so 
likely to tear, and the curtains can be 
used either end up. Slip a round- 
headed hat pin into the hollow of the 
rod to run them in the hems, and they 
will pass easily through. Rods may 
be fixed inside the sash so as to be 
elevated with the vrindow and not to 
lean against the screen. Cords tacked 
across the window will prevent the 



HOUSE FURNISHING AND DECORATING 



47 



sash curtain from beating against the 
screen. 

Or instead of rods use quarter-inch 
iron wire painted over witli gold paint 
or otherwise gilded or silvered. This 
makes the wire look better and pre- 
vents it from rusting. This wire is 
suitable for shams, mantels, and closet 
curtains, and many similar purposes 
in house decoration. It answers the 
same purpose as brass rods, and is 
much cheaper. It can be purchased 
at any hardware store, cut to any de- 
sired length. 

Flour Sacks. — Large flour sacks 
may be utilized for sash curtains by 
carefully washing out the print and 
finishing with a suitable design in 
fancy work. 

Curtains for Broad Windows. — Di- 
vide a broad, low window, or two win- 
dows together, by running two shelves 
across, one at the top of each sash. 
Paint or stain these to match the 
woodwork. Fit sash curtains to both 
shelves by means of rods or quarter- 
inch iron or copper iron, and hang 




"Divide a Broad Low Window. 



from brass rings. Let the hangings 
match the woodwork or conform to 
the color scheme of the room. The 
upper shelves may be treated as a, 
plate rail, and the lower shelf may 
hold pots of ferns or other green 
plants. 



Window Shades. — A double set of 
window shades — an inner dark shade 
to harmonize with the color scheme of 
the room, and an outer white shade — 
are desirable, but both are not neces- 
sary. It saves carpets and other things 
from fading to exclude the sunshine 
when a room is not in use, and also 
assists in keeping sunny rooms cool in 
summer. Hence, a dark or tan shade 
is to be preferred, unless the house is. 
fitted with blinds. In that case only 
the white shade is necessary. 

To Renew Window Shades. — Trim 
off the soiled or worn part at the bot- 
tom, make a new hem, and put back 
the stick. To do this lay on an iron- 
ing board, curled side down, the part 
of the shade that has been curled up 
over the roller and press it with a hot 
iron. This makes it easy to turn a 
hem, which may be stitched, on the 
sewing machine. Let the stitch out as 
far as it will go so that the fabric 
will not pucker. 

Or, if the shade is too short to trim, 
change the ends by opening the hem 
at the bottom, taking the shades from 
the roller and tacking the bottom of 
the shade to the roller. Make a new 
hem and put back the stick. 

To Hang Window Shades. — To ad- 
j ust the spring on new window shades, 
roll them tight, fasten them into the 
sockets, and draw them down full 
length. Take them out of their sock- 
ets, roll them up again by hand, and 
again draw them down until the spring 
is as strong as desired. 

To Prevent Blowing Window 
Shades. — To prevent the window 
shades from being drawn out at the 
top of the window or blowing back 
and forth when the upper sash is low- 
ered for ventilation, attach the cord 
from the bottom of the shade to the 
back of a chair, and move it a suffi- 
cient distance from the window to 
give a free circulation of air under- 
neath it. 

Substitute for Window Shades. — 
To economize on window shades, the 
upper rooms of a house may be fitted 
with shades of white cotton, having 
the selvage on one side and a very 



48 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



fine hem on the other. By the addi- 
tion of a little glue size or gum arable 
to the starch, they can be made very 
stiff. They look from outside almost 
equal to ordinary shades of Holland 
linen. They can, of course, readily be 
laundered when soiled. 

Draperies. — Portieres and other dra- 
peries must be selected with due re- 
gard to the size and shape of the room, 
as well as to the color scheme. Heavy, 
thick draperies make a small room 
look close and stuffy. But light, airy 
hangings are equally out of place in. 
a large room. To improve the effect 
of a room that is too narrow and high 
between joints, or a room having too 
high and narrow doors and windows, 
lower the window shades twelve or 
fifteen inches from the top and fill in 
the space with a grUl, a rope network. 




"Lower the Rod." 

a shirring of silk, or similar decora- 
tion. If the doors open outward, or 
if a door is" taken down and hung with 
draperies, lower the rod twelve or 
fifteen inches and fill in above with 
shirred silk or silkoline to harmonize 
with the portieres or draperies. 



Or run a shelf or plate rack across 
the top of the door on a level with 
the top of the window shades; by 
these means the room is made to seem 
lower and larger in proportion to its 
height. 

Or lower the curtain from the pole 
by means of cords to match the dra- 
pery. La<!e over the pole and through 
the hooks on the pins. 

Portieres. — ^In addition to the vari- 
ous grades of draperies on the mar- 
ket, burlap and other suitable farbrics 
may be made up for this purpose at 
much less expense. 

Or brown leather scraps may be 
purchased from bookbinders at a few 
cents a pound, cut in strips about half 
an inch wide, and tied in lots after 
the manner of carpet rags. These 
make very cheap and effective dra- 
peries for libraries and living rooms. 

Choose preferably materials that will 
not catch and hold dust more than is 
necessary, and avoid flounces, fringes, 
and tassels coarse enough to allow 
dust to accumulate in them. It is a 
good plan in summer to take down 
heavy draperies, shake and clean them, 
and pack them away until fall in a 
moth-proof box or chest. They will 
last longer, and the house wiU be much 
cleaner, more airy, and comfortable 
without them. 

Or, if desired, replace the winter 
draperies with cheap draperies of dark 
green or other color of burlap. Lower 
the pole a foot or more from the cas- 
ing to let the air pass through, and 
let them swing clear of the floor. 

Curtain Bings. — Rub the curtain 
poles occasionally with a rag dipped 
in kerosene oil to make the rings slip 
easily. 

To Clean Draperies. — Draperies and 
tapestries hung upon the walls may 
be cleaned by pouring gasoline into a 
shallow pan, and brushing them with 
this by means of a soft brush or whisk 
broom. 

MISCELLANEOUS OBJECTS 

Screens. — Have a carpenter nnJl to- 
gether strips of pine or other cheap 



HOUSE FURNISHING AND DECORATING 



49 



well-seasoned wood in any desired 
shape or size and in one or more pan- 
els. Hinge these together and have 
straight bottom supports with braces 
to prevent the screen overturning. 
Cover this with burlap, grass cloth, 
leather, or any suitable fabric and em- 




"Such Screens Are Inexpensive. 



broider or otherwise decorate as de- 
sired. Such screens are inexpensive, 
artistic, and useful to hide corners, 
openings to doors — as a kitchen door 
— ^and also to prevent draughts and to 
admit of opening windows for ven- 
tilation. 

Footstools. — Save the ends of car- 
pets left in evening up the design, also 
remnants of materials used for dra- 
peries, screens, and the like, to cover 
footstools. Make a lining of cotton 
cloth of the desired shape, to be filled 
with excelsior or similar material and 
cover with any desired fabric. 

Or take a piece of plank of any 
preferred size two or three inches in 
thickness. Pad it with cotton batting 
and cover with suitable material. 
Button down with brass tacks. Screw 
underneath heavy cast-iron clothes 
hooks as feet. 

Or make a footstool of empty tin 
cans such as tomato cans. Six cans 
will make a three-cornered footstool, 
or seven a round one. Cover each 
sejjarately with cloth, turning the rag- 
ged tin edges down; stitch them to- 



gether and cover with any suitable 
material. 

Or make heavy cushions similar to 
sofa cushions, and cover with heavy 
material, to take the place of foot- 
stools. 

rilling for Fancy Pillows. — Among 
the materials recommended for filling 
sofa pillows, porch cushions, and floor 
cushions, in addition to feathers, are 
excelsior, grass clippings, hay or 
straw, paper, cotton batting, dried 
tea leaves, milkweed fluff, hops, dry 
rose leaves, and lavender. Pine, hem- 
lock, or balsam needles may also be 
used, and are recommended for their 
delicate odor. 

Feather pillows are, of course, the 
best. To save chicken feathers for 
pillows, take the feathers immediate- 
ly after dressing the fowls, cover them 
with hot suds, and wash thoroughly. 
Put them in a large pan and let stand 
on the stove or in a slow oven until 
thoroughly dried. Let the heat be as 
strong as possible without scorching. 
Put them in a cloth bag and set in a 
dry place until enough have accumu- 
lated for a pillow. They will thus 
keep fluffy, and after being aired will 
be fresh and clean and without odor. 

Or take cotton batting and pick 
the cotton up very fine and fluffy. 
Place it in the oven in a pan and bake 
it with a slow fire. Have the heat as 
strong as possible without scorching 
the cotton and bake until thoroughly 
dry. If the cotton is picked up very 
fine and thoroughly baked it will not 
grow hard or mat up in pillows. Make 
an inner pillow to contain the cotton, 
and after it is stuffed go over it by 
means of a brush with a varnish of 
melted wax. This will make the pil- 
low impervious to moisture, and the 
cotton will always continue soft and 
downy. 

Or gather milkweed pods when 
nearly ripe. Store in a dry place un- 
til they burst open. Carefully sepa- 
rate the down from the seeds in the 
center, put them in a tight muslin bag 
rather than ticking. This material is 
equal to down. 

Or carefully rake the grass clip- 



50 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



pings from the lawn, raking lightly 
so as not to get dead grass or leaves. 
Cure these in loose beds, sunning for 
several days and turning frequently. 
Store in sacks in a dry place, and be- 
fore using dry thoroughly at the fire. 
Put them in the pillows while hot. 
Pillows thus made are light and soft, 
and have a delightful fragrance. 

Or wash clean old pieces of woolen 
ingrain carpet. Ravel it up and use 
the ravelings for filling cushions. 

Or take newspaper or any paper 
from the wastebasket, tear it into 
strips a few inches long and half an 
inch wide and curl these over a 
blimt edge, the same as in curling 
feathers. 

Or save tea leaves, dry thoroughly 
in the oven, and fiU the pillow with 
these. 

Or mix the tea leaves with other 
substances. 

Or mix in cedar sprays, rose leaves, 
lavender, and the like. 

To Hake Pillows. — Make sofa pU- 
lows large and fill them full enough so 
that they will be comfortable. Cover 
with silk, linen, or other soft fabric 
that will be comfortable, as well as 
artistic. If rough materials or em- 
broidery are used for decoration, have 
one side of the pillow covered with 
soft material for use. 

Have an inner pillow of cotton or 
other cheap material, and do not sew 
the cover to this, but leave an opening 
at one end. Sew an under facing 
along each of its two edges, and blind 
stitch the lower ends of the facings. 
Along the upper edge of one facing 
sew small buttons, and on the corre- 
sponding inside edge make button- 
holes. Thus the pillow can be removed 
when the cover requires cleaning. 

Denim, chambray, linen, crash, per- 
cale, and many other materials make 
inexpensive washable porch or sofa 
pillows. 

Or the wrappings that come about 
bolts of matting, and that can usually 
be obtained from dealers for a small 
sum or gratis, make inexpensive pil- 
lows that are very durable. Baste the 
edges together and bind with any 



strong cloth about two inches wide, 
and stitch all around on the machine. 

Or take ordinary burlap sacks such 
as hold potatoes, sugar, etc. Wash 
thoroughly and dye any desired color. 
One side of these may be covered with 
oilcloth for outdoor use. 

Pillow Ticks. — Make ticks of heavy 
sheeting rather than ordinary pillow 
ticking, and after making up the tick, 
turn it inside out and go over the in- 
side with a hot flatiron plentifully 
rubbed with beeswax. Continue until 
the inside of the pillow is covered 
with a coating of wax. This makes 
the pillow waterproof and prevents 
feathers or other material used in 
stufBng the pillow from working 
through. 

Chair Cushions. — Cover cushions for 
wicker chairs or Morris chairs with 
velveteen. This is a cotton fabric 
(hence not liable to the attacks of 
moths), and only requires brushing to 
keep it in order. A linen cover for 
the top of a Morris chair fastened 
with tapes helps to keep the cushion 
clean and can easUy be removed when 
soiled. 

Pillow Covers. — Make large, fancy 
pillow covers (square in shape) of any 




" To Make a Cheap Umbrella Stand." 

suitable heavy materied, as tapestry, 
denim, rep, and the like. Leave one 



HOUSE FURNISHING AND DECORATING 



51 



end open, turning in a rather wide 
hem, and place strong hooks and eyes 
or glove fasteners inside the hem to 
admit of readily opening and closing 
the aperture. Into these covers ordi- 
nary pillows that are used at night 
on folding beds or couches can be 
crowded each morning, and thus can 
be made to do double duty. This de- 
vice will be found very convenient for 
persons who are obliged to use their 
living rooms as sleeping apartments. 
But ordinary pillows can thus for 
economy's sake be utilized as fancy 
pillows in any circumstances. 

TJmbreUa Stand. — To make a cheap 
imibrella stand, take two or three 
smooth sugar-barrel hoops, cut out a 
piece to make them small enough, 
bring the ends together, and nail them 
to lathes about three feet long.^ Place 
the lathes several inches apart, nailing 
on the hoop at the top, center, and 
bottom. Use a tin pan at the bottom, 
smooth the whole with sandpaper, and 
paint or stain to any desired color. 

LIVINO BOOMS 

The old custom of setting apart a 
"best room" or parlor to be used only 
on special occasions, as for weddings, 
fimerals, or the entertainment of com- 
pany, is happily passing away. Only 
very wealthy people now have draw- 
ing-rooms reserved for state occasions. 
The present tendency is to call all the 
lower rooms of the house " living 
rooms," and to have all the members 
of the family use them freely. A room 
set apart from ordinary use, and hence 
shut up much of the time from sun 
and air, is not good for the physical 
or moral health of the household. 
Hygiene demands that sun and air 
should be admitted freely to all parts 
of the house. The furnishings them- 
selves, if good care is given them, will 
be improved rather than injured by 
ordinary wear, and guests will receive 
a far pleasanter impression from the 
easy and graceful atmosphere impart- 
ed to a room by daily use, than from 
the stiff and formal restraints imposed 
by the old-fashioned parlor. A hostess 
who takes her friends into a sitting 



room and tells them frankly that she 
prefers to "live in her own parlor" 
will have more friends than critics. 
The arrangement is plainly for the 
good of the family, and all who visit 
such a home will be the better for 
having been taken into the wholesome 
family life. 

When possible, it is pleasant and 
convenient to have two living rooms 




" Two Living Rooms Thrown Together. " 

thrown together by folding or sliding 
doors, with a grill and portieres or 
other suitable draperies across the 
opening. The effect of many country 
homes could be greatly improved by 
cutting an arch or square opening 
about the width and height of two or- 
dinary doors placed side by side or 
slightly wider, so as to throw two liv- 
ing rooms into one. Suitable folding 
or sliding doors, while desirable, are 
not necessary, as the opening can be 
closed by means of heavy hangings 
sliding on a rod. One of these rooms 
may, if desired, be furnished with 
more care and used less frequently 
than the other. But both should be 
regarded as living rooms in the full 
sense of the word. 



52 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



" Front Boom." — Large houses and 
ample means will, of course, suggest 
other living rooms, as the library, mu- 
sic room, a special sewing room, and 
the like. But these are neither neces- 
sary nor possible in ordinary house- 
holds, and the " front room " may be 
made not only more habitable but also 
more attractive to callers and guests 
by the presence of a piano or other 
musical instrument, and by low book- 
cases built along the walls, three or 
four shelves high, to hold the family 
collection of books, and stained or 
painted to match the woodwork. The 
top of these bookcases may be finished 
by a shelf about breast high, or slight- 
ly lower, on which plaster-of-Paris 
casts, vases, or flowers and other ap- 
propriate objects may be displayed. 
A " front room " having the walls 
hung with suitable cloth or paper in 
solid colors, or two-toned shades of 
brown or green, with shades of green 
or tan, and hangings to match the wall 
coverings; a hard-wood floor waxed 
and oiled, or floor stained or painted 
in imitation of hard wood, or a solid- 
color floor covering of denim or in- 
grain filler, with rugs of Oriental pat- 
terns and appropriate furniture, will 
have a distinctly modern and artistic 
atmosphere. 

Couch. — Couches and sofas having a 
raised headpiece or arms at either end 
are giving place to plain couches, after 
the fashion of the Oriental divan, 
without head or arms, and covered by 
appropriate couch covers. An ordi- 
nary folding canvas cot bed and a 
common cotton top excelsior or hair 
mattress thick enough to prevent sag- 
ging in the middle is really superior 
to a sofa or davenport costing much 
more money. Imitation Bagdad or 
other suitable couch covers in cotton 
fabrics are inexpensive, and a row of 
fancy pillows can be readily made of 
washable material at slight expense. 
Thus the entire couch and furnishing 
may be had at the cost of but a few 
dollars. 

On the other hand, by purchasing 
an iron or steel couch with wire-spring 
top and hair mattress, and adding a 



real Bagdad or other Oriental couch 
cover and pillows to correspond, a 
couch may be had that will be in 




"Plain Couch . . . without 
Head or Arms." 

keeping with the most luxurious sur- 
roundings. 

To Hake a Davenport. — ^To utilize 
an old-fashioned heavy bedstead of 
valuable hard wood, as mahogany, oak, 
cherry, or walnut, that has been re- 
placed by an iron or brass bed, lower 
the headboard by sawing off the legs, 
and taking out the panels. Lower the 
footboard in the same way. Saw it in 
two and use it for arms. Use one rail 
for the front part below the seat. Use 
the other rail and any removable pan- 
els from the headboard to furnish the 
remainder of the siding. Even the rail 
brackets may be used to furnish the 
front at the lower edge of the rail. 
Have an upholsterer prepare a suit- 
able top cushion of cloth or leather to 
match the wood. Make the seat of 
any cheap wood, as it will be covered 
by the cushion. The seat may be 
hinged, if desired, and thus provide 
underneath a receptacle for any de- 
sired purpose. Anyone handy with 
tools can do this work, or a local cab- 
inet maker can be employed at slight 
expense. 

Or, to utilize an old-fashioned post 
bedstead, saw off the posts and make 
them into pedestals for lawn seats, 
chairs, taborets, tables, and similar 
articles. 



HOUSE FURNISHING AND DECORATING 



53 



Center Table. — Have a low center 
table, with a reading lamp or a hang- 
ing lamp suspended over it, drawn out 
from the wall, and covered with books 
and periodicals, so that all the mem- 
bers of the family can gather about 
it. Cover this with a suitable cloth to 
harmonize with the color scheme of 
the room. The opportunity thus sug- 
gested of drawing up a number of 
chairs invites just the sort of infor- 
mal social life that is so much needed 
in every community, and that cements 
the family bond as weU as strengthens 
the ties of neighborllness. 



work are graceful, comfortable, and 
satisfactory. Of course, mahogany and 




"Have a Low Center Table." 



Tea Table. — Have, if possible, in one 
corner of the room a small, low table 
with an alcohol lamp and suitable tea 
things for making a cup of tea with- 
out going for it to the kitchen. This 
simple expression of hospitality gives 
a note of good cheer that is much 
needed in modern social life. There 
need be no formality suggested by a 
cup of tea offered to a caUer even in 
the most quiet neighborhoods, and 
having all of the needful articles at 
hand helps to give the serving of tea 
an air of grace and naturalness. 

Chairs. — Select chairs as other fur- 
niture for simplicity and durability, 
and avoid complicated affairs such as 
the patent rockers, carved or stamped 
furniture, and all elaborate designs 
and decorations. The lines of the 
Morris chair suggest ease and comfort, 
and they are to be strongly recom- 
mended. Chairs of willow and wicker 




" The Lines of the Morris Chair. 



other hard woods will be selected by 
tliose who can afford them. As to 
design, the Colonial models and the 
Craftsman and Mission styles of furni- 
ture are among the most satisfactory. 

Taboret. — The low stand or taboret 
holding a graceful fern or other potted 
plant in a suitable jardiniere adds an 
agreeable touch of grace and color to 
the living room. 

Husic. — The modern invention of 
the mechanical piano player has un- 
locked many a dusty piano and opened 
the whole world of music to thousands 
of homes. Heretofore the cost of a 
musical education has restricted the 
natural love of music in most families 
to but a few simple hymns and times 
that almost anyone could play. Hence 
the piano need no longer be regarded 
as necessarily confined to homes where 
some member of the family has a pro- 
nounced musical talent. Certainly 
nothing signifies more, with the pos- 
sible exception of a collection of good 
books, than a musical instrimient in 
the family living room. 

Care of Fiano. — To keep the piano 
or organ in good condition, arrange to 
have the atmosphere of the room dry, 
but not too dry, and at a moderate 
and even temperature. If the atmos- 
phere is damp, there is a tendency for 
the wires to rust and the keys to stick. 
A dry heat without any moisture in 
the air will tend to check the varnish 
and also to injure the adjustment of 
a musical instrument. Hence, if rooms 
are heated by hot air, hang a small 
galvanized iron pail containing water 



54 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



from the under side of the register, 
so that the heated draught in coming 
up will bring a small amount of mois- 
ture with it. 

Or, if gas or coal stoves are used for 
heating, place a suitable vessel of wa- 
ter on the top of the stove. The slight 
resulting moisture will be beneficial to 
aU the furniture, although the piano 
will perhaps suffer most from the lack 
of it. The slight humidity is also good 
for the health of the family. 

Do not stand the piano close against 
an outer wall, which may be damp or 
chilled from frost in winter, and if pos- 
sible keep it out of a direct draught. 
If an upright piano, tack a dust cover 
of denim or other suitable material 
across the back to exclude dust, leav- 
ing flaps wide enough to be thrown 
over the piano when sweeping. These 
can hang down behind the piano when 
not in use. Take care that no small 
articles laid on the keys find their way 
inside of the instrument. Have a mu- 
sic cabinet, so as to keep the top of 
the instrument free from books and 
sheet music. Keep the piano closed 
when not in use, and have it tuned 
three or four times a year, or oftener, 
if necessary. If it is not kept up to 
pitch it wUl not stay in tune when 
required. An hour or two of practice 
on a piano each day will keep it in the 
best condition. But, if possible, every 
key on the keyboard should be struck 
at least once daily. 

Care of Sheet Music. — Have a music 
cabinet, homemade if necessary, with 
shelves large enough for a piece of 
sheet music, and close enough together 
to admit of keeping the pieces classi- 
fied. Bind two or more pieces of mu- 
sic of the same general kind together 
as desired by means of brass brads 
sold by stationers. The use of these 
is very simple. Lay the sheets one 
upon the other in the order desired, 
cut a slot top, bottom, and middle a 
half inch from the back edge with a 
penknife, insert the brad and turn 
down the edges. 

Or, to bind music together, take a 
piece of strong manila or other tough 
paper two inches or more in width. 



and as long as the music is high. Fold 
this lengthwise in the middle and 
paste one side to one piece of music, 
the other to another. Run over this 
with a hot flatiron to insure its dry- 
ing quickly and evenly without virin- 
kles. If the sheets tear apart, insert 
a similar strip between the torn sheets, 
and when all have been reenforced in 
this way take a similar strip of tough 
paper or muslin wide enough to go 
round the back of the whole collection 
and lap over an inch or more on either 
side. Slush the back well with paste 
or glue, lay on this strip, rub down 
tightly, and let dry imder a weight. 
A manila folder or cover the same 
size as the music itself may be " drawn 
on" in a, similar way to correspond 
to the cover of a bound book. 

Pictures — Good and Bad Taste. — A 
good illustration of what to avoid is 
foimd in the family photographs en- 
larged by the carbon or imitation pas- 




" Mitch Less Seen than Formerly." 

tel process, and surrounded by massive 
frames at the recommendation of en- 
terprising manufacturers, whose prof- 
its are in proportion to the size of 
the frame and the elaborateness of the 
molding. Only the eloquence of the 
venders could give such pictures even 
a temporary popularity, but they are 
seen everywhere. Family photographs 
should be, as a rule, confined to sleep- 
ing apartments rather than displayed 
in living rooms, and much better re- 



HOUSE FURNISHING AND DECORATING 



55 



productions can be had in smaller sizes 
than upon a large scale. Carbon and 
other reproductions have little deco- 
rative value, and even when enlarged 
should be framed as simply and un- 
obtrusively as possible. This work can 
usually be done at a lower rate and 
of a better quality by a local photog- 
rapher. 'The difference in expense will 
usually furnish the living room with 
a good photographic reproduction of 
one of the masterpieces of the world, 
that will be equally interesting to 
strangers and instructive to the in- 
mates of the home. Happily, public 
taste is rapidly improving in these 
matters. Heavy and elaborate mold- 
ings with intricate designs made of 
putty and covered with gilt paint, or 
oak molding stamped in imitation of 
hand carving, and the like monstrosi- 
ties are much less seen than formerly. 
The object of picture molding is, of 
course, twofold — to protect and to de- 
fine the picture; hence the frame itself 
should be unobtrusive and should in 
no way attract the eye to itself. If 
the wall coverings are in solid colors 
or quiet two-toned effects, and the 
picture frames are simple and appro- 
priate, the picture itself stands out 
in all of its natural beauty. Thus the 
object is attained for which the pic- 
ture was hung. A few pictures of 
reasonable size and real merit, simply 
but appropriately framed, give a much 
more artistic effect than does a wall 
crowded with a large number of sub- 
jects among which those that are in- 
ferior must necessarily suffer by con- 
trast. 

Pictures to Choose. — Select for liv- 
ing rooms landscapes, reproductions 
of still life, ideal heads and faces, and 
reproductions of masterpieces por- 
traying scenes or subjects that might 
properly be the subject of conversa- 
tion in the social circle. 

For the music room, photographs of 
eminent composers and other musi- 
cians, or reproductions of paintings 
suggested by the use of the room, are 
appropriate. 

For the library, photographs of lit- 
erary and other public men, and re- 



productions of public buildings of all 
ages and in aU parts of the world, are 
in order. 

Reserve for the privacy of sleeping 
apartments photographs of friends or 
relatives of the family, children, and 
all other pictures that, however inter- 
esting they may be to the owner, can 





" The Frame Should Be Unobtrusive." 

be of no general concern to those who 
are not members of the family. 

To Hang Pictures. — Do not make 
the common mistake of hanging pic- 
tures above the line of sight, so as to 
make it necessary to strain the eyes 
in looking up at them. Pictures should 
not, as a rule, hang more than five 
and one half feet from the floor — 
about on a level with the eyes of a 
person of average height when stand- 
ing. But, of course, the different pic- 
tures, for the sake of variety, are 
hung slightly above or below this line, 
according to their size and other cir- 
cumstances, and not at a uniform 
level. Remember that in looking at 
a picture the eye falls, not at the ex- 
act center, but at a point about in- 
termediate between the center and 
the top of the picture, or at about 
one third of its depth from the top. 
Hence, if a picture is hung so that 
the line of sight of a person of aver- 
age height when standing falls on 
this point, it is displayed to the best 
advantage. 



56 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



Do not hang a picture in direct 
light, as exactly opposite a sunny 
window. When possible, a picture 
should be located with reference to 
windows and other openings so that 
it will be lighted as the artist intend- 
ed; that is, the shadows in the picture 
should appear to be cast by the light 
that falls upon it. 

Suspend large and heavy pictures 
from a picture molding which may be 
as near to the ceiling as possible to 




"On a Level with the Eyes. 

give a low room the effect of greater 
height, or lower it from the ceiling to 
give a. high room a broader eflFect. 
Use as little picture wire as may be. 
Two wires and hooks, one near either 
end of a large picture, rather than a 
single hook with wire running from it 
diagonally in either direction, is to 
be preferred. Suspend small pictures 
preferably from small hooks or tacks 
driven into the wall behind the pic- 
ture itself, and by means of rings or 
screw eyes in the back of the frame, 
all of which will be concealed from 
sight when the picture is hung. That 
is, have as little picture wire visible 
as possible. Ordinary woven picture 
wire is now inexpensive and can be 



used again and again. It not only 
looks better but Is safer than cord. 
Ordinary " silver " wire is suitable for 
most purposes. It can be touched up 
with a little bronze paint to hang gilt 
frames, or when it becomes tarnished. 
Picture hooks of brass may be painted 
white or otherwise, to conform to the 
color of the picture molding and thus 
be less conspicuous. 

In order to get the most effective 
arrangement, when in doubt where to 
hang pictures, do the experimental 
grouping on the floor. Thus the pic- 
tures may be shifted about until the 
most tasteful way is found. This 
saves many trips up and down the 
stepladder. When taking down pic- 
tures from the molding, make a dot 
with a pencil point on the wall back 
of the molding, where it will not show, 
exactly where the hook was hung, or 
leave the hook in place so that the pic- 
ture when cleaned may be returned to 
its place without the necessity of 
measuring again. But if the wall cov- 
erings are of material that shows the 
effect of fading, as do most solid col- 
ors, especially greens and browns in 
ingrain papers, burlap, and the like, 
change the position of the pictures 
occasionally. Otherwise the wall cov- 
ering behind the picture will not fade, 
and when for any reason a change 
becomes necessary the outlines will be 
unsightly. 

Passepartout. — Buy a piece of glass 
cut to the desired size at a picture 
shop. Common window glass will an- 
swer. Or buy old photographic nega- 
tives from a photographer, and have 
them cut to the right size if necessary 
by a glazier. Soak these in strong 
potash lye to remove the films, and 
rinse in clear water. The glass may 
be of the same size as the picture, or 
the picture maj' be mounted on a suit- 
able mat and backed with a piece of 
cardboard in which small rings or 
pieces of wire have been inserted to 
hang it up by. Bind the whole around 
the edges with passepartout binding, 
which may be had in any desired color 
of a dealer in photographic supplies. 
Thus prints and photographs may be 



HOUSE FUENISHING AND DECORATING 



57 



neatly and artistically framed for next 
tu nothing and form suitable orna- 
ments for any home. 

Mats for Pictures. — Use common in- 
grain or moire wall papers of various 
colors in place of mats or picture 
mounts. It is cheaper and equally 
effective. Mount the pictures on the 
mats as photographs are mounted, if 
desired, or measure the proper size for 
a cut-out with pencil and paper on 
the back of the mat and cut along the 
edges with the point of a very sharp 
penknife or a razor. 

magazine Covers. — The cover de- 
signs and full-page illustrations of 
several of the leading monthly and 
other periodicals are reproductions of 
the best works of prominent artists 
and illustrators. These are freely 
used in many homes to decorate the 
walls of libraries, dens, and sometimes 
living rooms, either framed or bound in 
passepartout binding or merely neatly 
trimmed with a straightedge, and at- 
tached to the wall by means of brass- 
headed tacks or thiunb tacks. A series 
of cover designs of one or more peri- 
odicals makes a very interesting and 
attractive frieze for the den or library. 

To Transfer Pictures. — To transfer 
to glass any sort of pictures upon 
paper or cardboard, cut the glass to 
the desired size, wash it clean with 
soap and water, rinse dry and go over 
the surface with a cloth moistened in 
alcohol. Apply one or two coats of 
colorless copal or other hard spirit 
varnishes, and let dry where no dust 
can fall upon it. Soak the print or 
photograph in water until it is thor- 
oughly saturated, or, in the case of a 
photograph, until it can be detached 
from the mount. It will not be in- 
jured by water if care is taken when 
it is wet not to tear it. Let stand in 
water over night if necessary. AVhen 
fully saturated lay the face of the 
print on a sheet of blotting paper, give 
the glass a fresh coat of varnish, and 
when the varnish becomes tacky, but 
before it dries, put the engraving in 
place, face downward, on the var- 
nished side of the glass. Rub it down 
by means of a straightedged piece of 



soft rubber called a " squeegee," or 
the blunt edge of an ivory paper cut- 
ter, Thus get every bubble of air out 
from between the print and the glass. 
By means of a. soft piece of India 
rubber rub up and remove the moist 
paper from the back pf the print until 
it becomes transparent and as thin as 
may be without injuring the image. 
Varnish the back and let it dry. Pic- 
tures thus transferred are especially 
convenient for binding with passe- 
partout tape, as there is less weight 
and thickness to be sustained. 

Pictures — To Transfer to Plaster. — 
To transfer a print of any sort from 
paper or cardboard to a plaster-of- 
Paris mold or cast, or rather to mount 
the print on a suitable disk of plaster 
of Paris, first obtain a dish or tray of 
suitable size and shape, of tin, glass, 
Japan ware, or any hard substance 
having a smooth surface. Moisten the 
edges of the print with water, and if 
it is mounted on thick paper or card- 
board bevel the edge of the mount 
from the back by rubbing with a piece 
of sandpaper or sheering it by means 
of a razor or other sharp tool so that 
the edge of the print will be thin. But 
take care not to give a ragged edge to 
the print itself. Obtain plaster of 
Paris from a paint shop and mix it 
with cold water to the consistency of 
cream. Dip the picture in cold water, 
lay it face down in the bottom of the 
tray, and squeegee it down smooth to 
force out bubbles of air from between 
the print and the glass. Pour the 
plaster over it to a depth of half an 
inch or less, and before the plaster sets 
insert into the back hooks or passe- 
partout hangers by means of which to 
suspend rt. Just before the plaster 
hardens loosen it slightly about the 
edges with a sharp knife, and when it 
has fully set it will slip out of the 
mold, having a smooth surface to con- 
form to the inside of the tray, and 
showing the design as if the lines were 
drawn and the colors printed upon the 
cast. Trays may be round, square, or 
oblong, to suit the designs, and maga- 
zine covers or full-page colored repro- 
ductions from periodicals or any other 



58 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



pictures may be transferred or mount- 
ed by this process. 

SLEEPING BOOMS 

The objects and nature of sleep 
should be understood as a basis for 
the intelligent furnishing and care of 
the bed and bedroom. Perhaps no 
other subject in connection with the 
household is more important or less 
understood. Where more than one 
person occupies a sleeping room each 
individual should have a separate bed, 
even if the requirements of space or 
other conditions make it necessary for 
two or more beds to stand side by 
side. It is especially important that 
children, after a very early age, should 
have separate cradles or cribs pro- 
vided for them and be taught to oc- 
cupy them. The reason for this cus- 
tom is that individuals vary greatly 
in the amount of heat required to keep 
the body in a normal condition during 
sleep. Children require less covering 
than grown persons, and aged persons 
require much more covering than those 
in middle life. Separate beds admit 
of each individual adjusting the cov- 
ering to his own requirements. Again, 
while the bodily sensations are dor- 
mant during sleep, they are not ab- 
sent, or else a person could not be 
awakened. The body is still sensitive 
to outer impressions. Hence the mo- 
tions of another sleeper or the changes 
in temperature produced by the addi- 
tion or removal of coverings to ac- 
commodate a bedfellow may awaken a 
sleeper who by his restless motions 
will keep his companion awake, and no 
sound sleep may be enjoyed by either 
person. Fortunately, the invention of 
cast-iron and other cheap metallic bed- 
steads that may be obtained in half 
and three-quarter sizes makes it pos- 
sible for many families to afford sepa- 
rate beds, a luxury which would for- 
merly have been denied them. 

The introduction of iron and brass 
bedsteads in many homes on sanitary 
and hygienic grounds, and the con- 
sequent discarding of old-fashioned 
wooden bedsteads that are heavy, dif- 



ficult to clean, and that by collecting 
dust and furnishing harboring places 
for vermin are constantly contribut- 
ing to the labor of the housekeeper, 
gives an opportunity to Introduce this 




" The Introduction of Iron and Brass Beds." 

cleanly, healthful, and agreeable cus- 
tom. Moreover, single or half beds can 
be readily moved from one room to 
another and from place to place, ^hey 
are easier to open, air, and spread, the 
bed coverings (which should be made 
specially for them) are easier to han- 
dle in the laundry, and their use, in 
short, is advisable from every stand- 
point. 

Ventilation of Bedrooms. — The ef- 
fect of entire lack of ventilation is 
illustrated by the celebrated case of 
the " Black Hole of Calcutta." About 
150 Europeans taken at the capture of 
Fort Williams in Calcutta in 1756 
were confined in a dungeon about 
twenty feet square, having two small 
windows. The following morning only 
twenty-three remained alive. In a 
similar case, on the steamer London- 
derry, 150 passengers were confined in 
a small cabin for a number of hours. 
Of these, seventy died from constant- 
ly rebreathing the air contaminated 
in the lungs and by various exhala- 
tions of the human body. In breath- 
ing (and also in the combustion of 
fuel, as wood or coal, or of oil or gas 
for illumination), a part of the oxy- 
gen of the air which is necessary for 
human life is converted into carbonic- 
acid gas. The atmosphere consists of 
about 78 per cent of nitrogen, 20.96 
per cent of oxygen, 1 per cent of 



HOUSE FURNISHING AND DECORATING 



argon, and .04 per cent of carbonic- 
acid gas mixed together. Each breath 
converts about one fourth of the 
available oxygen in the air Into car- 
bonic-acid gas; hence in an air-tight 
space death from suffocation would 
very quickly ensue. 

Ordinary dwellings are, of course, 
by no means air-tight, and are par- 
tially ventilated through the narrow 
openings about window frames, by 
the occasional opening of doors, and 
through various cracks and crevices. 
But these sources are not sufficient to 
supply the volume of pure air required 
for human breathing. Rooms occu- 
pied by a. number of persons are al- 
most invariably so close that a great 
deal of air is necessarily breathed 
again and again. The results upon 
bodily health are in their nature the 
same as those which produce death by 
suffocation. Only the exhaustion is 
more gradual and extends over a lon- 
ger period of time. 

The effects of insufficient ventilation 
are perhaps less during our waking 
hours than during sleep. Most per- 
sons move about a good deal during 
the day and are in and out of doors. 
Moreover, the lungs are active, and if 
the air is impure, they may make up 
the deficiency by more frequent respi- 
ration. When a person is conscious, 
the discomfort of close air, resulting 
in headaches and a sense of incipient 
suffocation, affords warning that it is 
time to change the air in the room or 
take a walk outside. But a sleeper is 
usually unconscious of any warning 
sensations. The respiration is slower, 
and there is nothing to check the evil 
effects of breathing again and again 
the air that has been robbed of its 
oxygen. The result is the impairment 
of all the vital processes that normally 
make up during sleep for the daily 
wastes of the body. Hence sleeping 
in poorly ventilated rooms leads im- 
mediately to headaches, a sense of 
having rested badly, with exhaustion 
and fatigue, and eventually to such 
wasting diseases as consumption, ca- 
tarrh, and other affections of the head, 
throat, and lungs. 



The Presh-air Cure. — It is now well 
known that consumption, the most 
wasting and fatal of all human dis- 
eases, can be cured in many cases by 
simply breathing pure air out of doors, 
both day and night. Modern sani- 
tariums have sleeping porches of can- 
vas or tents in which patients sleep 
out of doors, even in cold climates in 
winter, the body being protected by 
suitable covering. The contrast be- 
tween slow suffocation from lack of 
ventilation and the cure of consump- 
tion by breathing pure air both day 
and night should impress upon every- 
one the absolute necessity of thor- 
ough ventilation, especially in sleeping 
apartments. 

When to Ventilate. — It is a sure 
indication that, when the air in a room 
seems close and has a musty odor to 
a person coming in from outdoors, it 
is so impure as to be injurious to 
health. If, after stepping into the 
open air in the morning and taking a 
few deep breaths, one returns to a 
sleeping room and finds the air insuf- 
ferably close, the room has not been 
sufficiently ventilated during the night, 
and evil consequences are sure to 
follow. 

Or place a shallow glass dish con- 
taining lime water in a room to de- 
termine the presence of carbonic-acid 
gas. If there is much of this sub- 
stance present the water will quickly 
become cloudy. 

Or, to test for marsh gas, sewer gas, 
and the like containing sulphureted 
hydrogen, expose to the air moist car- 
bonate of lead, which will turn black 
if this substance is present. 

Night Air. — There is a. superstition 
prevalent in many parts of the country 
that night air is injurious. There may 
be some ground for this belief where 
the Anopheles mosquito is abroad in 
malarial districts, or the vicinity of 
swamps wherever a mist may arise at 
night and spread contamination. But 
in most localities this notion is en- 
tirely groundless and misleading. If 
we do not breathe night air at night, 
pray what shall we breathe? Either it 
is necessary to breathe over and over 



60 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



the air that has been in the sleeping 
room all day, or else to admit fresh air 
from outdoors, and whatever the dan- 
ger in breathing night air, it is certain- 
ly less immediate than quick or slow 
suffocation from lack of ventilation. 

To Ventilate Bedrooms. — The prob- 
lem of ventilation is twofold: first, to 
let in the pure air; second, to let out 
that which is impure. There should 
be windows on two sides of the bed- 
room, and also, if possible, a fireplace 
for ventilation. The bed should be 
located so that the air will circulate 
freely around and beneath it without 
a draught. If possible, the door when 
open should screen the bed, or a screen 
should be interposed when necessary 
between the bed and the open door or 
window. 

The simplest means of ventilation is 
to lower the upper sash of a window 
for several inches and raise the lower 
sash either of the same window or of 
one on the opposite side of the room. 
If there is an open fireplace in the 
room, it will remove the impure air 
by creating a draught and causing 
suction. 

Or lower the upper sashes of two 
windows opposite one another. 

Or open the bedroom door and ad- 
mit the fresh air to an adjacent room 
or hall by means of two or more win- 
dows in such a way that a draught 
passing near the bedroom door wiU 
create suction and draw the impure 
air out of it. The direction of these 
air currents may be determined by 
holding a lighted match or candle in 
them. 

Just before retiring open all the 
windows and change the air in the 
room. 

To Prevent Draughts. — To prevent 
a direct current of air crossing the 
bed on raising a window sash, take a 
piece of any firm, tightly woven cloth, 
as duck or light canvas or strong flan- 
nel -goods, the width of the window 
and about eighteen inches deep. Make 
a heading at top and bottom to admit 
sash-curtain rods. Adjust one rod at 
the bottom of the window frame and 
the other about twelve or fourteen 



inches higher up. Thus when tlie sash 
is lifted as high as the upper rod the 
entering current of air will cause the 
cloth to belly out into the room, and 
the current will be turned on both 
sides and driven along the wall. A 
current of air, like a current of water, 




" The Air Will Follow Along the WalV 



has a tendency to stick to any surface 
over which it flows; hence the air will 
follow along the wall, and even to 
some extent around the corners of the 
room, as can be seen by testing with 
the flame of a candle. 

Or either end of this cloth screen 
may be closed by means of a pin or 
buttonhole and button, and the entire 
current turned in the opposite direc- 
tion. Ordinary sash-curtain rods or 
even rollers such as are used for cur- 
tain shades or sticks used for the 
lower part of curtain shades may be 
adj usted permanently for this purpose 
in sleeping rooms. 

Or the patent spring sash-curtain 
rods, that have a spring inside and 
rubber tips at the end to keep them 
adjusted, may be utilized to make one 
or more removable screens. These can 
be adjusted according to conditions 
from time to time on any windows in 
any part of the house. 

Or' stretch a piece of cheese cloth 
over the opening and tack it fast. 



HOUSE FURNISHING AND DECORATING 



61 



Or tack cheese cloth on a small re- 
movable frame that will fit into the 
opening. 

Or put a sheet of finely perforated 
metal in place of one of the upper 
panes of glass in one of the windows. 

Or tack a strip of thin wood or stiff 
cardboard eight to twelve inches wide 
across the lower part of the window 
frame, an inch or two from the glass. 
When the sash is raised the current 
striking this obstruction is turned up- 
ward into the air and may be thrown 
entirely over the bed, just as a cur- 
rent of water might be thrown from 
a hose. 

Or place a piece of board in the 
window casing below the bottom of 
the sash. When the window is closed 
down upon this board a space is left 
between the upper and lower sash 
which admits a current of air. 

Or place an ordinary fire screen or 
wooden frame covered with cloth or 
paper between the window and the 
bed, as is often done in hospitals. 

Or make a little curtain of sheeting 
to fit the head of the bed and tie at 
the four corners by means of tape. 

Any of these devices may be used 
to ventilate other than sleeping apart- 
ments. 

Sleeping Porch. — In the vicinity of 
the great sanitariums where sleeping 
out of doors has been proved to be a 
cure for consumption and other dis- 




' The Porch Should be Screened." 
/ 

eases, many persons have formed the 
habit of sleeping thus. Any porch 
somewhat excluded from view and in 
a sheltered location can be utilized. 
The porch should be screened and pro- 



vided with storm curtains of tent can- 
vas that can be drawn and buttoned 
like the curtains of a carriage. If 
the porch is used during the day a 
bunk or folding bed may be hinged 
to the wall on one side, with legs that 
will let down on the other. When 
folded up this may be concealed by a 
waterproof curtain. Or one of the so- 
called hammock beds may be suspend- 
ed by hooks from the ceiling. 

If suitable blankets are provided it is 
possible to sleep out of doors the year 
roxmd in most parts of the United 
States, with the exception of a very 
few nights, and probably no practice 
would be more invigorating, healthful, 
or pleasurable, especially in the sum- 
mer months. 

BedTOOms. — Furnishings and decora- 
tions of bedrooms should conform to 
the object for which the room is in- 
tended. Simplicity should be the key- 
note. Wall coverings in geometrical 
designs or large-figured patterns of 
any sort and all bric-a-brac and use- 
less flounces and decorations should 
be avoided. The fewer objects not 
actually necessary in the room the bet- 
ter. Finish the woodwork in natural 
colors, oiled or stained, and preferably 
with oil paint or varnish. Tint the 
walls or hang them with a solid col- 
ored or double-toned paper, or a sim- 
ple stripe. Hang at the windows light 
muslin or cheese-cloth curtains, either 
white or dyed to conform to the gen- 
eral color scheme. If the floors are 
smooth, oil and wax them, or stain 
or paint them with any of the lac 
paints or varnishes. Floors not smooth 
may be covered with either linoleum 
or matting as preferred. Avoid, as a 
rule, the use of carpets in bedrooms. 
A plain stained or painted wood floor 
with rugs is much easier to keep clean 
and is more sanitary. 

Beds. — Iron or brass beds fitted with 
woven wire or other suitable wire 
springs are to be preferred. The iron 
beds in white enamel harmonize well 
with birch and other light-colored 
woods and enameled furniture; and 
brass beds with mahogany, walnut, 
and other hard woods in darker col- 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



ors. The furniture should be of sim- 
ple design, without carving or un- 
necessary decoration. The mattress 
should be of hair or cotton felt, of 
good quality, and made in two parts, 
for convenience in turning and airing. 
The bed clothing should be light and 
warm, consisting of linen or cotton 
sheets, blankets, and a white spread. 

Beds and Bedding. — The ideal bed 
for^health and comfort is of metal, 
either white enameled iron or brass, 
with a box spiral shelf spring or 
woven wire spring having enough spi- 
ral springs through the middle so that 
it will not sag. Iron and brass beds 
are now so cheap that they are being 
rapidly substituted for wooden bed- 
steads in all parts of the country. In 
choosing enamel beds see that the 
brass fittings are of good quality and 
well put on. The brass parts are the 
first to show wear, especially if they 
are loosely adj usted ; and if they come 
off, the loss will spoil the appearance 
of the bed. 

Enameled beds may be renovated 
by going over them with white or 
black enamel paint; to make them 
look like brass use gilt enamel. Any 
of these can be washed with soap and 
water. Thus a metal bed can be easily 
kept in perfect sanitary condition, 
free from dust, dirt, or vermin. Hap- 
pily, the old-fasliioned slat and cord 
bedsteads are rapidly becoming things 
of the past. 

mattresses. — The bed should not be 
softer than is necessary for comfort, 
and the surface should be smooth and 
nearly level. Feather beds are advisa- 
ble for healthy adults only in ex- 
tremely cold weather or cold climates, 
and in unheated rooms. They may be 
used for children or the aged in ordi- 
nary temperatures, but they should 
rather be packed tightly in thin ticks 
than loosely in large masses. Mat- 
tresses with suitable springs and bed 
coverings are to be preferred in most 
cases. The best material for mat- 
tresses is curled hair, although the 
much-advertised modern mattresses of 
felted cotton are also good and cheap- 
er. Mattresses of excelsior and husks 



\vith cotton tops and ticks filled with 
clean hay or straw, or even beach-tree 
and other leaves are stiU used in many 




" The Much Advertised Modem Mattress." 

parts of the country. Any of these 
are hygienic and comfortable, and are 
to be preferred for adults in good 
health to feather beds. 

The best material for pillows Is 
curled hair, but if feathers are used 
the pillows should be tightly packed 
so that they will not allow the head 
to sink into them. The use of thick 
pillows is inadvisable. The pillow 
should be of just about the right 
thickness to support the head in its 
natural position when lying on the 
side, or to allow it to incline slightly 
backward. 

Bed Springs. — The upholstered or 
box springs are the best. Make a 
cover of heavy unbleached drilling 
slightly larger than the springs, or 
cover them with a worn sheet or faded 
quilt. Fasten brass rings in the cor- 
ners of the cover and attach them to 
brass-headed tacks or nails driven into 
the under side of the spring. This 
prevents the cover from slipping, but 
makes it removable for dusting. Or 
with a darning needle and cord tack 
the cover neatly and firmly in place. 
This prevents the springs from stain-* 
ing the mattress with rust. 

Bed Covers. — As the muscles are 
entirely quiescent during sleep the 
body generates much less heat than in 
waking hours. Hence the bedclothes 
should furnish greater warmth than 
the ordinary clothing. On the other 



HOUSE FURNISHING AND DECORATING 



63 



hand, the bed should not be warm 
enough to interfere with normal evap- 
oration or overheat the body so as to 
cause undue perspiration. 

Light bed covers of a suitable non- 
conducting material, as wool or eider- 
down, are much better than heavy or 
numerous covers of cotton, as home- 
made quilts and comforters. Wool 
blankets are perhaps the best of all 
bed covers, and nothing else except a 
suitable coverlet for the purpose of 
decoration should be used if blankets 
can be afforded. Linen sheets are 
preferable to cotton for the reason 
that they are more absorbent. Hence 
they take up more readily the per- 
spiration of the body. For the same 
reason they are much cooler in sum- 
mer. They are more durable and it 
will be found a wise economy in the 
long run to purchase sheeting of un- 
bleached linen rather than of cotton 
material. 

Bedspreads. — Net, with lace inser- 
tion and edges, over an inexpensive 
lining of any color to match the other 
furnishings, makes an attractive bed- 
spread. 

Or dimity or dotted muslin may be 
used. 

Or an old pair of lace curtains may 
be utilized by sewing the scalloped 
edges together to form the middle of 
the spread, and lining with any suit- 
able colored fabric. 

Valances. — The use of a valance is 
much less customary than formerly, 
as it is now thought more sanitary to 
allow the sunlight to penetrate to all 
parts of the room and the air to cir- 
culate freely. But if a valance is used, 
it should not be fastened to the frame 
of the bed, but so adjusted as to be 
easily removable for the laundry. 
Hence, to make a valance, cut a sheet 
to the size of the top of the mattress; 
make the valance in four sections, one 
for each side and for the top and bot- 
tom of the bed, and just long enough, 
allowing for the hem, to reach from 
the bottom of the mattress to the 
floor. Baste these sections to the 
edge of the sheet like a ruffle. Do not 
join the top and bottom to the sides. 



but leave the corners open. Try this 
on to see that it fits exactly before 
stitcliing. When completed, spread 
the sheet over the springs, and put the 
mattress on over it, so that the val- 
ance will hang down on all sides like 
a ruffle. Thus the valance always stays 
in place, but can easily be removed 
for washing, and the old sheet to 
which it is attached serves to protect 
the mattress from the springs. Deli- 
cate Swiss or other light washable 
fabrics are more suitable for this pur- 
pose than cretonne or other heavy 
figured material. 

Use of Feather Beds. — Formerly 
feather beds were much-valued lux- 
uries, and the possession of a store 
of them was a matter of family pride. 
Happily, however, they are rapidly 
being replaced by mattresses, which, 
on account of improved methods of 
manufacture and the use of new ma- 
terial, are much better and cheaper 
than they were formerly. Feather 
beds are open to many objections. 
They are difficult to keep clean and 
they conform too closely to the shape 
of the body; hence they heat the body 
and do not admit of proper ventila- 
tion. Their use is always debilitating, 
and can only be justified by extreme 
cold weather, or for infants or very 
aged persons. 

Teathers for Beds and Pillows. — 
The best feathers for this purpose are 
live geese feathers or other feathers 
plucked from the live birds; but 
chicken, goose, or duck feathers may 
be preserved and used for beds or pil- 
lows by putting all the soft feathers 
together in a barrel as they are picked 
from the birds after scalding. Leave 
the barrel open to the sun and rain, 
simply covering it with an old screen 
to prevent the feathers from blowing 
about. 

Or purchase the feathers in quan- 
tity from the nearest poulterer and 
purify them yourself. Thus you can 
obtain plenty of feathers for pillows 
and feather beds at very little expense. 

Feather Pillows. — Feathers are open 
to the same objections when used in 
pillows as in feather beds. By con- 



64 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



forming to the shape of the head they 
prevent ventilation and tend to over- 
heat the scalp. This weakens it and 
may lead to premature baldness or 
other affliction. Curled hair should 
be substituted for feathers whenever 
possible. 

To Pill Peather Pillows. — To trans- 
fer feathers from an old feather bed 
to pillow ticks, or from one pillow 
tick to another, open a small part of 
the seam in the tick containing the 
feathers, draw over it the opening in 
the tick to be filled, and tack it to 
the full tick with basting thread, using 
large stitches. Feathers can then be 
shaken from one tick to the other 
without the white fluff getting about. 
Remove the basting threads and pin 
the openings together until you have 
time to stitch them firmly. This can 
be done in such a way as not to lose 
a single feather. 

To Make Pillow Cases. — Pillow slips 
and bolster cases usually give out first 
at the corners from being hung on 
the line with clothespins and from 
the impact of irons against the sewed 
ends. Hence, by leaving both ends of 
the case open, you can distribute the 
wear over it all and double its life. 
Such cases are also much easier to 
iron. Both ends may be trimmed with 
lace or insertion, and two or three 
buttons and buttonholes may be left 
at each end to button the pillow in. 
Pillows thus trimmed will not need 
pillow shams. 

To Protect Ticks. — To protect mat- 
tresses and pillow cases from becom- 
ing soiled make covers for them of 
unbleached cotton cloth or any suit- 
able washable material, cut the cloth to 
measurements of the mattress and pil- 
lows, and finish one side or end with 
buttons and buttonholes, so that the 
cover can be easily slipped off and 
cleaned when necessary. Or the mat- 
tress protector may be tied on with 
tape. Bed linen often falls short of 
covering the mattress completely while 
in use, hence the extra slip is needed, 
especially to protect from the dust the 
under side of the mattress. These slips 
can be removed and laundered twice a 



year or oftener when housecleaning ; 
the pillow covers may be removed 
oftener if desired. Ticking treated 
in this way will be fresh and clean at 
the end of a dozen years' hard usage, 
when otherwise it would be so worn 
and soiled as to be unfit for use. A 
dozen or two yards of cheap material 
will make cases for all*the ticks in an 
ordinary household. 

Or old sheets, pillow cases, or worn- 
out garments may be utilized for this 
purpose. Cloth flour sacks make ex- 
cellent pillow covers. Of course, the 
usual bed linen will be needed in ad- 
dition to these. 

Mattress Top. — A soft top for a 
husk or excelsior mattress may be 
made of old cotton or woolen blankets 
that have outworn their original use. 
Place between the blankets several 
thicknesses of cotton batting and tie 
the same as for comforters. 

Sheets. — Linen is, of course, the best 
material for sheeting, for comfort, 
appearance, and durability, but cot- 
ton sheeting is more conmionly used, 
because it is less expensive. Buy un- 
bleached linen or cotton for sheets 
and pillow slips, as it is not only less 
expensive, but much more durable and 
can be easily bleached when being 
laundered. 

To Make Sheets. — When making 
sheets, tear off one length, pin the 
first end of this length to the sheet 
and measure off the next. Then sew 
up as you have pinned. Thus the 
threads run the same way and the 
sheets will never pucker in the middle 
when washed. 

Look over sheets before they go 
to the laundry and mend any tears at 
once. Sheets usually wear first and 
split in the middle. When this hap- 
pens tear them down the middle, sew 
together the outer selvage edges to 
make the middle of new sheets, and 
hem the torn sides. This should be 
done as soon as the sheets begin to 
wear thin, without waiting for them 
to tear. It will double the life of the 
sheet. 

Quilts and Comforters. — The mod- 
ern factory system has taken out of 



HOUSE FURNISHING AND DECORATING 



65 



the home one by one practically all 
of the domestic arts that occupied so 
large a portion of the time and atten- 
tion of our grandmothers. Their place 
is being taken partly by fancy work 
and partly by the various activities of 
the different kinds of woman's clubs 
and similar forms of associated effort. 

The use of blankets and factory- 
made puffs, that are cheap, light, and 
warm, bids fair to displace in time to 
come the old-fashioned pieced quilt, 
crazy quilt, or comfortable of our 
grandmothers. But the custom of 
piecing and tying quilts still holds its 
own in many localities, partly on the 
score of economy — as a means of util- 
izing old pieces of various fabrics — 
and partly as a pleasant and useful 
occupation for time that would other- 
wise pass heavily. For the guidance 
of those who still find it worth while 
to make homemade quilts and com- 
forters, and as a memorial of one of 
the last of the domestic arts to pass 
away, a few suggestions may be in 
order. 

Sorting Pieces. — Sort the accumu- 
lated pieces that are no longer re- 
quired for patching, putting goods of 
the same general character, as ging- 
hams, woolens, calicoes, silks, and the 
like, in separate lots. Quilts made of 
similar goods are more satisfactory 
than if various kinds of goods are 
mingled together, and may be used 
for different purposes. Silk quilts 
may be used for couches and sofas, 
woolen quilts for the guest chamber, 
gingham and calico quilts for every- 
day wear, and quilts from old stock- 
ings for summer quilts, porches, and 
hammocks. 

To line Quilts. — Quilts may be 
made from blocks cut in various de- 
signs by means of patterns, or made 
crazy fashion, filled with cotton or 
cotton batting or with an old blanket, 
lined with new goods or calico or simi- 
lar material, and quilted or tied. A 
helpful suggestion as to filling and 
lining quilts is to make rather large 
blocks. Fill and line each block sepa- 
rately. Have the blocks (which may 
be made of smaller blocks sewed to- 



gether) two or three feet square. Cut 
lining the same size, put the pieces 
together and sew around three sides 
to make a bag open at one end. Now 
turn the bag right side out, leaving 
the seams inside. Introduce one or 
more thicknesses of cotton batting, tie 
at intervals to keep the cotton in 
place, and when the blocks are com- 
pleted sew them together and cross 
stitch the seam with silk or worsted. 
The advantage of this method is that 
the blocks, being relatively small, may 
be tied without quilting frames. 

Or make a foundation for a quilt or 
comforter by sandwiching cotton bat- 
ting between two thicknesses of cheese 
cloth and basting all together. This 
makes a cheese-cloth comforter or 
pad. Cover this with the patchwork 
quilt and line in the usual manner. 
This method is preferable, as the 
cheese cloth keeps the cotton in place 
with very little quilting or tying. The 
cover will need some fastening, but a 
very few knots will be sufficient ; hence 
the cover may be easily removed and 
washed or replaced. 

Cheap Quilts. — ^Where the greatest 
warmth is desired with the least num- 
ber of quilts and absolute economy is 
necessary a liumber of thicknesses of 
newspapers between two pieces of 
cheese cloth, with or without one or 
more thicknesses of cotton batting, 
will give as much warmth as an addi- 
tional pair of blankets. Baste all to- 
gether and cover with a piece quilt 
and line in the usual manner. 

Or use large sheets of tissue paper. 
But as the quilt is worn the news- 
papers will crumple and cease to 
rattle. 

Or use old blankets for summer 
comforters, cover with silkoline or 
other soft, washable material, and tie. 

To Hake Crazy Quilts. — Use as a 
foundation old flour sacks sewed to- 
gether, old sheets, or any strong, 
waste, washable material. Trim odd- 
sized pieces in any shape, mixing small 
and large together. But use materials 
of the same general quality, as silk, 
woolen, and the like, and either stitch 
them to the foundation by hand or 



66 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



stitch around the edge of each piece 
on the sewing machine. Afterwards 
feather stitch the blocks and squares 
together. Line with any suitable ma- 
terial and tack with cotton wadding 
to the lining. The advantage of this 
method is that it saves time and the 
necessity of using quilting ffames. 

Crazy quilts may be made of old 
calico pieces, pieces of summer dress 
goods or woolen dress goods, silk neck- 
ties, ribbons, or the like, or the tops 
of woolen, silk, or cotton stockings, 
and used for a variety of purposes. 
Baste or pin the pieces on to the doth 
ground before placing them in the 
sewing machine or stitching them by 
hand, and mingle the colors so as to 
get a pleasing effect. Turn the edges 
under to form a hem before stitch- 
ing them to the background, and 
work fancy stitches about the edges 
of each. 

To Protect Quilts. — Bedquilts and 
comforters become worn and soiled 
mainly at the ends, by contact with 
the face and hands when in use, and 
also when the beds are opened, aired, 
and made up. Hence protect the ends 
by saving an extra piece of the lining 
material sufficient to cover the quilt 
for six inches deep on each side of 
the end. Or tack on a piece of calico, 
cheese cloth, or other suitable material 
over each end to a depth of five or six 
inches. Tack this on by hand, or at- 
tach by feather stitching. 

When soiled this protective strip 
may be ripped off, washed, and re- 
placed, and the quilt itself will not 
require washing for a long time. These 
strips do not injure the appearance 
of the quilt when in use, as the lower 
end is tacked under the mattress and 
the upper end covered by the pillows 
or turned back under the top sheet if 
the bed is partly opened. 

In regions where the temperature is 
very variable it is usually better to 
make light quilts and comforters and 
plenty of them, than to have a smaller 
number of relatively heavy quilts. 
From two to four pounds of cotton 
for each quilt may be used, according 
to climate. 



Homemade ftuilting Frames. — To 
make a quilting frame, order from a 
lumber yard or sawmill four strips of 
hard pine 1 inch thick, 3 inches wide, 
and 6i feet long. These should not 
Cost more than twenty-five cents. 
Tack a piece of muslin along the edge 
of each strip. Buy four clamps for 
a dime at a hardware store, or have 
them made by a blacksmith, and you 
have a cheap set of frames that will 
last a lifetime. 

To Tie Quilts. — In summer arrange 
a shady place out of doors to stretch 
the frames. Teach the children how 
to tie the knots and have them assist. 
One of the most regrettable things 
about the passing of the domestic arts 
is the loss of their great educational 
influence in forming habits of indus- 
try in children, and preparing them 
by a sort of domestic apprenticeship 
to take their places in the industrial 
arts and crafts in later life. If the 
quilt has no blocks or other regular 
pattern as a guide in tying the knots, 
a piece of cheese cloth of the same 
size as the quilt may be marked off 
into squares with crayon or by draw- 
ing threads, and holes may be clipped 
with buttonhole scissors where the 
lines intersect. Stretch this over the 
quilt and tie through the holes. 

Or use an old sheet for this pur- 
pose. The cheese cloth or sheet may 
be removed, roUed up, and used again. 
In this way several persons can work 
at the same time, and each will know 
where to tie. 

To Tie a Quilting Knot.— Thread 
the needle with yarn or silkateen 
double. Pull through the quilt as 
usual, leaving an end about one inch 
long. Form a loop of the long end 
over the left forefinger and thumb, 
and through this loop pass the short 
end, drawing the thread up tight at 
the same time with the other hand. 
Repeat this, beginning with fingers on 
the other side of the thread than be- 
fore, thus forming a reverse loop. 
This makes the knot square, which it 
would not be if the second loop was 
begun on the same side of the yarn 
as the first. This will never loosen. 



HOUSE FURNISHING AND DECORATING 



67 



and saves drawing the long thread its 
ftill length as in the old way. 

folding Beds. — To prevent a bed of 
this kind from folding prematurely 
when occupied, place a piece of board 
about the thickness of the mattress, 
and the same length, between the mat- 
tress and the side of the bed when the 
bed is open. This board may be of 
good hard wood or painted to match 
the woodwork and polished, and may 
be put in a closet when not in use. 

Infant's Bed. — if you have no room 
for a child's crib or bed in addition to 
other furniture, a Morris chair makes 
a good substitute and can be utilized 
during the day. Lay the back down 
flat with something under it for a 
support, and make it up with blankets 
and pillows. 

Dressing Table. — Any low, plain 
wooden table may be converted into 
a convenient dressing table by cutting 
out a crescent-shaped section in front, 
or screwing to the top a wooden lap- 




" Covered with Dainty Dimity. 



board having a section cut out to ad- 
mit of sitting close to the table. The 
top may be covered with dainty dini- 
ity or muslin with a rulfle or lace 
valance around the edge and a looking 
glass hung above. 

Bureau Scarfs. — Lay over the top 
of the bureau or dressing table a 
shaped piece of white oilcloth to pre- 
vent the polish being injured by acci- 
dental spilling of liquids and scratch- 



ing from pins and the like, and over 
this lay a suitable bureau scarf. To 
make a dainty bureau scarf join three 
medium-sized handkerchiefs v/ith hem- 
stitched borders by inserting between 
them a row of lace insertion and whip- 
ping lace edging to match all around. 
Stitch the whole to a suitable colored 
lining. 

Substitute for a Washstand. — Fas- 
ten by means of cleats a three-cor- 
nered piece of board of suitable size 
in a corner of the room; let fall from 
this to the floor a drapery running on 
a piece of quarter-inch wire or brass 
curtain rod. This makes a cheap and 
convenient substitute for a washstand. 
Cover with oilcloth. 

Wardrobe. — Put up on brackets 
against the wall a shelf fourteen or 
fifteen inches wide and as long as de- 
sired, rounding off the corners; from 
this suspend, by means of quarter-inch 
wire or curtain rods, suitable hangings 
to the floor. Underneath this shelf 
screw suitable hooks and fasten cleats 
to the wall to hold other hooks, the 
whole forming a substitute for a 
clothes closet or wardrobe. An addi- 
tional shelf may be put underneath 
if desired. 

Bathroom. — When possible, cover 
the floor of the bathroom with tile, 
cement, or other washable material, 
but linoleum is a good substitute for 
these. Or use cork carpet, which is 
warm to the feet and is washable and 
desirable, although it spot? easily. 

Hang the walls with waterproof pa- 
per. Or tint the walls with a natural 
cement that has no glue and does 
not require a glue size on the wall. 
Apply this direct to the plaster, cover 
with water enamel or soluble glass, 
and when dry go over it with shellac 
or any good hard varnish. Neither 
steam, water, nor heat will affect this 
kind of a wall. The work can be done 
by anyone, and the cost is insignifi- 
cant. Walls above sinks and wash- 
stands and other parts of the house 
may be treated in the same way. 

Or hang India matting three feet 
high around the wall above the wain- 
scot boards, and finish top and bot- 



68 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



torn with a small piece of molding. 
This gives a clean, airy appearance 
to the room, and may be wiped off 
with a damp cloth. 

The best plumbing and porcelain 
are none too good for the bathroom. 
Be sure that all joints are tight, and 
that the entire equipment is kept in a 
sanitary condition. 

T^ LIBBABY 

A room specially furnished as a 
library is not possible in all homes. 
It is not only a great luxury where it 
can be afforded, but has also an im- 
portant educational influence. If a 
room can be spared for the purpose 
no great expense is required to furnish 
a library attractively, as the books 
themselves, if properly arranged, go 
far toward giving the room a habit- 
able look. Fewer bookcases are used 
now than were formerly. It is much 
more customary to build in low shelves 
about the walls of the library or liv- 
ing rooms, or both, having a shelf 
above on which magazines, casts, fig- 
ures, etc., can be placed. These shelves 
may be built in removable sections; 
placed side by side or built in againsl 
the wall, and stained or painted to 
match the woodwork. Anyone who is 
handy with tools can make them, or 
they can be put in at very little cost 
by a local carpenter. Break off the 
shelves where they come to a window 
casing, and have a low shelf wider 
than the others, and level with the 
window sill, built in as a window seat. 
Cover this with a cushion of denim or 
other suitable material and supply it 
with sofa cushions. A writing desk 
or table, a Morris chair, and other 
suitable chairs will complete the neces- 
sary furnishings. 

Hang the walls with suitable paper 
or cloth in solid colors, as reds or 
browns. Paint or stain the floors, or 
cover them with linoleum, matting, 
or something that will not gather dust. 
Avoid intricate designs and patterns 
of all sorts that tend to fatigue the 
eye and interfere with the restfulness 
and quiet which the use of the room 



suggests. Books, if they receive prop- 
er care, do not require glass cases to 
keep them in good order. They are 
far more convenient upon open shelves, 
and lend quite a different aspect to 
the room, in which they are kept. 

Writing Desks. — Have a suitable 
desk or table furnished with paper, 
pens and ink, pencils, and all other 
conveniences, both for study and for 
business and social correspondence. 
Such duties are much more neglected 
in the ordinary family than they would 
be if all these conveniences were at 
hand in a place set apart for the 
purpose. Furniture is now made so 
cheaply that a good oak desk, if it 
cannot be purchased locally, may be 
had of one of the mail-order houses 
for a small amount, or may be ob- 
tained at a low price of second-hand 
dealers in the larger cities. Such an 
article of furniture lasts a lifetime 
and contributes a great deal toward 
forming habits of order and system 
in the household that are much en- 
couraged by the practice of writing 
memoranda of various sorts. But if 
nothing better can be had, an ordi- 
nary kitchen table with one or two 
large drawers to hold paper, ink, and 
pencils may be placed in the library, 
painted or stained to match the wood- 
work, and covered with a piece of felt, 
denim, or other suitable material; this 
substitute will answer all the purposes 
of the most expensive article. 

Or a suitable desk that may be put 
together by anyone who is handy with 
tools will answer every purpose. 

Use of the Library. — Put in a lib- 
eral supply of shelves, if a room is set 
apart for a library, and fill them as 
soon as possible. The empty shelves 
will speak for themselves and suggest 
the habit of buying good books to 
fill them. Do not despise paper-bound 
books or back numbers of popular 
periodicals, even if the covers become 
slightly worn and dog-eared. Much of 
the best literature of the world is 
now published in periodicals or re- 
printed in cheap paper editions, and 
books that are worth a king's ransom 
may be purchased at five or ten cents 



HOUSE FURNISHING AND DECORATING 



69 



apiece. The thoughtful reader can 
get as much from these volumes as 
if they were printed on parchment 
and bound in cloth of gold. 

Buy well-bovind books when you can 
afPord to do so, but never, put off 
buying a book you need or want be- 
cause you can only buy it second hand 
or in a cheap binding. The old books 
are often, if not always, the best, and 
they usually come the cheapest. Emer- 
son says it is a good rule not to read 
any book that is not ten years old. Buy 
a dictionary, and, if you can afford 
to, a good encyclopedia. Hang on 
the walls a map of the world and one 
or two other good maps. Provide a 
blackboard if there are children in the 
family, and also a drawing board, 
which may be homemade, with a T 
square and a few^ simple draughting 
utensils. Encourage the children to 
use the library as a place in which to 
get their lessons, and to invest their 
pennies in books. This last will be a 
habit of lasting value. Have a file in 
which to preserve letters, bills, and 
family memoranda, and a tin box or 
a small safe for deeds, leases, and the 
like. Keep the laundry list, shopping 
list, inventory of furniture, and all 
similar memoranda for the entire f ana- 
lly in the library desk or table, where 
it can always be found at a moment's 
notice when wanted. 

Care of Books. — Have book shelves 
rather deep, and bring the books out 
to the front edge of the shelf rather 
than crowd them back against the 
wall. They look better, may be dusted 
more easily, and where the walls are 
damp are not so likely to get moldy. 
Tip the books gently forward and 
dust the tops each day; occasionally 
take them down, two or three at a 
time, and carefully dust them and the 
shelf behind them. Commence, of 
course, with the top shelf. Note when 
dusting any indication of mold and 
take steps to remove and prevent it. 

Books — To Prevent Mold. — Spray 
the books and shelves, by means of an 
atomizer having a fine spray, with oil 
of lavender, pennyroyal, or any of the 
perfumed eSsential oils. Oil of cedar 



was used by the ancients to preserve 
their valuable manuscripts. Add a 
few drops of any essential oil to li- 
brary paste, ink, or any similar sub- 
stance, to prevent mold, and apply 
the same to leather bindings by means 
of an atomizer or soft cloth or brush. 

Insect Pests of Books. — The prin- 
cipal insect pests in a library are the 
ordinary cockroach and the silver fish, 
silver louse, silver witch, sugar fish, or 
whatever it may be locally called, as 
it goes under a number of different 
names. This is a small silvery shining 
worm or moth which is seen when 
books and papers that have remained 
undisturbed for some time are moved. 
It shuns the light and runs very rap- 
idly to a place of concealment, so it 
is not often seen. But the effects of 
its ravages are very apparent. It loves 
starch, and feeds on the starch used 
in the bindings of books, and also eats 
away the surface of heavily glazed 
paper to feed upon the sizing. It 
eats also starched clothing, linen, and 
curtains, and may do damage to any 
fabric in which starch has been used 
as a size. 

To destroy the silver flsh, cover bits 
of cardboard with boiled starch paste 
poisoned with arsenic and lay them on 
book shelves, behind mantels, under 
washbowls, in the bottom of drawers, 
etc. But, of course, take care that 
this paste is not within reach of chil- 
dren or household pets. 

Or dust bookshelves liberally with 
common Persian insect powder of 
pyrethrum. A poison for roaches 
will be found elsewhere. 

Oil or Grease on Books. — To re- 
move oil or grease spots from books 
or paper, sprinkle the spot thickly 
with a little powdered pipe clay, full- 
er's earth, or prepared chalk; lay over 
this a sheet of brown paper and ap- 
ply a hot iron, but not hot enough to 
scorch the sheet. If the powder sticks 
to the paper, rub it off gently with a 
soft eraser. 

Or warm the parts and take up as 
much of the grease as possible with 
fine blotting paper. Apply to the spot 
hot spirits of turpentine or sulphurous 



70 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



ether with a soft, clean brush or rag. 
Let dry and moisten with alcohol. 
This will kill the grease without dis- 
coloring the paper. Repeat if neces- 
sary. 

Or mix equal parts of finely pow- 
dered burnt alum and sulphur. Wet 
the paper slightly and sprinkle with 
this powder imtil the spots disappear. 
But remember that fine glazed or 
coated paper must not be wet. 

Ink Stains. — To remove ink stains 
from paper or the leaves of books, 
first test to find the nature of the ink 
by moistening with water, and taking 
up as much as possible on clean blot- 
ting paper. If the stain is that of 
iron-gall or logwood ink apply spirits 
of salts diluted with five or six parts 
of water, and rinse in clear water as 
soon as the ink disappears. 

Or use a saturated solution of ox- 
alic, citric, or tartaric acid or salts 
of lemon. None of these will affect 
printer's ink. Apply with a camel's- 
hair brush or soft cloth. Rinse with 
clear water and dry between blotters 
by means of a warm smoothing iron. 

Or apply alternately by means of a 
camel's-hair brush first a solution of 
oxalic acid and then cyanide of potas- 
sium until the ink is removed. 

Or, if the ink contains nigrosine, 
eosin, or other coal-tar products, wet 
chloride of lime with water until it 
melts slightly, moisten a soft cloth 
with this and touch the spot gently 
until the ink mark disappears. Rinse 
with clear water containing a few 
drops of aqua ammonia. Repeat if 
necessary. 

Ink Eraser. — Have at hand tartaric 
acid in large crystals. Rub off the 
sharp corners of the crystals and 
moisten slightly in water. Rub the 
ink mark with this. Repeat if neces- 
sary. When the ink has disappeared 
apply dry blotting paper, and the 
spot may be written over at once. 

Or dissolve four ounces of chloride 
of lime in one quart of water and 
strain through cheese cloth. Dissolve 
separately one ounce of acetic acid in 
ten ounces of water. Apply first the 
chloride of lime and afterwards the 



acid solution by dipping the blunt end 
of the penholder in it and letting a 
drop fall on the spot, by moistening 
the cork, or otherwise. Do not rub 
the paper when it is moist. Apply 
blotting paper as soon as the ink 
disappears. 

Iron Stains. — To remove iron stains 
or mold from leaves of books or pa- 
per, apply a solution of sulphate of 
potash and follow with a saturated 
solution of oxalic acid. 

To Clean Books. — To clean paper 
or books that have become soiled by 
handling, rub with a soft piece of 
stale bread to take off loose dirt, lay 
over the page a piece of clean blot- 
ting paper moistened in a saturated 
solution of citric, tartaric, or oxalic 
acid, and go over this with a hot iron. 
Do not use enough of the solution to 
wet the page, but simply moisten the 
leaf of the book with the acid. 

To Remove Fruit Stains. — Hold the 
st^in over an inverted cone or funnel 
filled with the fumes of sulphurous- 
acid gas from a burning brimstone 
match or a bit of sulphur. Remove 
stains from the edges of book leaves 
by means of fine sandpaper. 

To Clean Prints. — Fasten prints or 
engravings to a board and by means 
of a camel's-hair brush wash with 
dilute carbonate of ammonia (one 
ounce to a pint of water). Rinse with 
fresh water, turn, and repeat the 
process on the opposite side. Dip the 
paper in a solution of one ounce of 
white wine vinegar and a teaspoonf ul 
of chloride of lime to a pint of water. 
Rinse with clear water and expose to 
direct sunshine. This process will 
clear up the background without in- 
juring the print. 

Or, to clean prints that are merely 
spotted with water, dip them in clear 
water, or let them lie in running 
water until saturated. Pin them to a 
board and expose them to direct sun- 
shine. 

To Restore Faded Uanuscripts. — 
To restore old manuscripts, which are 
usually written in iron-gall inks, ap- 
ply by means of a soft brush a satu- 
rated solution of ferrocyanide of pot- 



HOUSE FURNISHING AND DECORATING 



71 



ash in water, and copy the writing as 
soon as it appears, as it will again 
fade. 

Or boil gallnuts in alcohol and ap- 
ply by means of a sponge or brush. 

To Mend Torn Book f ag«s. — Clip 
two narrow strips of tracing paper 
long enough to cover the tear and 
apply them on either side the page 
by means of Japanese rice cement, 
which is a paste made of boiled rice 
starch. Both the paper and the paste 
being transparent the tear, if skillfully 
mended, will not be noticeable and 
will not interfere with the use of the 
voltmie. 

To remove creases, put the sheet 
between two pieces of white unsized 
paper, or blotting paper slightly 
dampened, and smooth with a warm 
flatiron when the crease comes out. 

To Freshen Bookbindings. — Rub 
with a soft piece of stale bread or a 
piece of chamois slightly moistened 
and dipped in pulverized pumice stone. 
To restore calf bindings, dissolve one 
ounce of pure white glue in a pint of 
warm water, add a teaspoonful of 
glycerine and a. tablespoonful of rice 
or flour paste. Apply by means of a 
soft brush and polish with a chamois 
skin slightly dampened. 

list of Books. — Have a list or cata- 
logue of even the smallest collection 
of books. This may be kept alpha- 
betically, by setting apart one or more 
pages of a blank book for each letter 
in the alphabet. When lending a book 
make a memorandum on a slip of pa- 
per of the date and name of the bor- 
rower, and slip it into the leaves of 
the catalogue. It is a pleasure to lend 
books, but not to lose them. Thus you 
will always know where your books 
are, and can ask for them if they are 
not returned within a reasonable time. 

To Handle Books. — To open a new 
book, first cut the leaves by means of 
a blunt paper cutter or other straight- 
edge. Do not use scissors or other 
sharp edge for this purpose, as a cut- 
ting edge may slip and injure the 
page. Then rest the book on a flat 
surface, steady it upright with the 
left hand, let one cover fall to the 



right, and with the right hand open 
the leaves a few at a time, smoothing- 
them gently until the middle of the 
book is reached. Turn it around, let 
the other cover fall, and repeat the 
process until the other half of the 
leaves have been opened. This flexes 
the back of the book equally, causes 
it to open freely, and prevents break- 
ing the backbone of the book by open- 
ing it suddenly and violently in one 
place. Cheap and poorly bound books, 
if carefully opened by this method, 
will often stand a lifetime of ordinary 
wear. 

Do not lay an open book face down 
or with another book or anything else 
between its leaves. Do not turn down 
the corners of leaves to keep the place. 
Use a bookmark, if necessary, but re- 
member that persons who read much 
have no difficulty in finding without a 
bookmark the place where they left 
off. 

Do not pull books from a case by 
the top of the binding. Take them 
by the backs. 

Let children handle books freely, 
and teach them to give books good 
care, but if necessary cover the books 
with cloth or paper to preserve the 
binding. 

Pens. — Hold a new pen for a mo- 
ment in the flame of a match, or mois- 
ten it with water before dipping in 
ink. 

Scrapbooks. — Keep one or more 
scrapbooks on the library table, with 
scissors and paste or mucilage always 
at hand, and give all members of the 
family the privilege of freely contrib- 
uting to them. Or let each one keep 
a separate scrapbook. Any blank 
book may be used for this purpose 
by cutting out every second leaf, or 
two leaves out of three. If desired, 
instead of pasting clippings to the 
pages of the scrapbook, strong envel- 
opes may be pasted with the face to 
the page, so that the flap may be 
opened and the clipping slipped in. 
These may be labeled on the flap, and 
an index kept inside the front cover 
or on the first page or two left open 
for the purpose. Thus a book may be 



72 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



kept for cooking recipes, with an en- 
velope each for bread, puddings, cakes, 
gravies, etc. 

Or j okes, funny pictures, and poems 
may be preserved and brought out to 
entertain friends or lent to cheer a 
sick neighbor; or a book for quota- 
tions, bits of wit and humor, pretty 
sentiments, and the like; or a book 
of household recipes to supplement 
those contained in this and similar 
volumes. 

Conunonplace Book. — Have a scrap- 
book or blank book in which to keep 
memoranda of the things you come 
across in reading that you think are 
important enough to remember. All 
literary men have some system of 
keeping notes of things they read that 
interest them, so that they can look 
up the passage again upon occasion. 
Anyone who reads a great deal knows 
that the memory cannot be trusted to 
carry indefinitely the accumulated re- 
sults of many hours of study. But a 
system of notes classified by index 
will preserve the key to one's reading, 
and vrill be of untold benefit in future 
years. 

Pencil Sharpener. — Cover a small 
block of wood with coarse sandpaper 
on one side and fine on the other. The 
coarse paper serves as a rasp for the 
wood of the pencil, and the fine paper 
to give any required degree of sharp- 
ness to the point. This is as good a 
pencil sharpener as can be found. 

To Clean Pencil Erasers. — Have at 
hand a piece of old plaster. When 
the eraser becomes soiled, rub it on 
the plaster to clean it. 

Beading Aloud. — The best way to 
keep books in good order is to use 
them, and books will not long remain 
on the shelves to collect dust if the 
different members of the family are 
in the habit of reading aloud. Select 
for this purpose stories simple enough 
to be interesting to every member of 
the family. Do not make reading dis- 
tasteful by attempting to choose books 
that will give direct instruction, but 
consult the tastes of all and read for 
pleasure and to make the habit of 
reading attractive. Once formed the 



habit will grow by what it feeds on, 
and by wise selection of good fiction 
different members of the family may 
be stimulated to more serious readings 
for themselves. Let all take turns, 
and the hours so occupied will be long 
remembered as among the pleasantest 
and most fruitful that were spent in 
the family circle. Happy are the 
parents who by this means encourage 
the reading habit among their chil- 
dren. The greatest men in the world 
are those who formed during boyhood 
the habit of reading at every available 
moment. Carlisle said that " the best 
university nowadays Is a collection of 
good books." The taste for good 
books and the habit of reading are 
keys to the libraries of the world. 

To Prevent Hold. — Books, papers, 
or documents stored in safes, drawers, 
or book shelves may be protected 
against mold by putting among them 
small lumps of camphor. These evap- 
orate in time, and must be renewed 
when necessary. 

Pictures. — Modern photography has 
introduced many improvements in the 
arts that have cheapened the process 
of reproducing pictures. Hence it is 
now possible for every family to af- 
ford reproductions of the most cele- 
brated paintings and other art objects. 
Several firms of photographers issue 
catalogues from which selections can 
be made of prints reproduced from 
the contents of the art galleries of 
the world. The celebrated Perry pic- 
tures cost but a few cents each, and 
are not only artistic in -themselves 
but have a distinct educational value. 
Hence prints and photographs prop- 
erly framed are rapidly taking the 
place of the lithographs and chromos 
of a former generation. Steel and 
copper-plate engravings, etchings, and 
original paintings are also obtainable 
at much lower prices than they were 
formerly. 

To Choose Pictures. — ^Pictures give 
the last touch to the decorations of a 
home, and are in many ways its most 
important ornament. But they should, 
as a rule, be among the last articles 
to be selected, and should be chosea 



HOUSE FURNISHING AND DECORATING 



73> 



with the greatest care. Pictures hung 
in the living rooms of a home reveal 
the tastes of the inmates. Hence not 
only should the subjects be appro- 
priate to the room in which they are 
hung, but they should harmonize with 
one another, and contribute to a pleas- 
ing general effect. No single picture 
should be so large or so heavily 
framed as to be the most conspicuous 
object in the room or attract undue 
attention from other pictures and 
from the furnishings in general. 

THE BININe BOOM 

Besides the regular dining-room fur- 
niture, tables, chairs, sideboard, and 
serving table, the addition of a plate 
rail or rack for plates, pitchers, and 
other decorative china objects, and of 
a china cabinet with glass doors for 
displaying the best china, help to give 
a room character and beauty. The 
effect of these articles will be very 
much heightened if the wall coverings 
are in solid or double-toned colors, 
and, as in other living rooms, hard- 
wood floors or floor coverings in solid 
colors, with a large rug or drugget 
coming within a few feet of the wall 
aU around, make perhaps the most 
effective treatment. The color scheme 
of the dining room should preferably 
be in cheerfid tones, as blues, yel- 
lows, or reds, according to the amount 
of light the room receives. 

China Closet. — The china cabinet is 
a useful and beautiful article of fur- 
niture, but in the absence of such a 
cabinet any ordinary closet opening 
into a dining room may be utilized 
as a china closet by removing the 
door and replacing it with a deco- 
rative door with diamond panes of 
glass, and lining the interior with 
denim to correspond in color with the 
furnishings of the room. 

Or the door may be removed and 
replaced by a suitable drapery hang- 
ing from a rod, and drawn aside when 
the dining room is in use. Screw 
hooks on the inside of the shelves of 
the china cabinet or closet from which 
to hang cups to display them, save 



space, and prevent breakage. Tack a 
narrow strip of board two or three 
inches from the back of each shelf, as 
a rim to hold up the plates. Or put 
in a row of brass tacks standing an 
eighth of an inch above the shelf for 
this purpose. 

Table Pad.— A pad of table felt 
sold for the purpose should be laid 
over the dining-room table, both to 
protect the polish and to save the 
linen tablecloth. But an old blanket 
or thick cotton flannel may be used 
for this purpose, or clean carpet lin- 
ing can be utilized by covering it with 
white muslin smoothly pasted on. This 
will last for months and can be read- 
ily replaced. 

To Store Table leaves. — Fasten un- 
der the lower shelf of the pantry the 
frame in which the extra boards of 
the extension dining table come, and 
slide the boards in. Thus they take 
up no extra space and are always at 
hand. 

China. — Select a stock pattern when 
buying china, and preferably a stand- 
ard design of some sort, as the well- 
known willow or onion design, or some 
other that can be readily replaced as 
pieces are broken. When possible it 
is, of course, a good plan to have two 
sets of china, one for best, to be dis- 
played in the china cabinet and only 
used upon special occasions, and an- 
other for ordinary wear, which may 
be less delicate and expensive. 

THE EITCHEir, STOBEBOOM, AND 
PAHTEY 

The kitchen, as the workshop of the 
house, is the room in which many 
housekeepers spend most of their 
waking hours. Hence it should be 
perhaps the lightest, airiest, and most 
cheerful room in the house. It is safe 
to say that much more attention 
might well be given to the matter of 
kitchen conveniences than they usu- 
ally receive. There are very few 
housekeepers indeed who could not, 
by intelligent forethought in plan- 
ning and arranging the contents of 
the kitchen, pantry, and storeroom, 



74 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



save themselves daily miles of useless 
traveling to and fro. 

Color for Kitchen. — Try to make 
the kitchen a room in harmonizing 
tints by painting or tinting the walls 
in light greens and the floor in dark 
green. Or a clear, light yellow is a 
good color for the kitchen walls, with 
the floor in brown. Or, if the room 
has a southern or western exposure, 
gray walls, with the floor in drab or 
slate color, will give a. cooler effect. 

Kitchen Walls. — Kitchen walls 
should be covered with washable ma- 
terials; hence ordinary wall paper 




' The Cracks May be Filled.' 



and calcimine are less suitable in the 
kitchen than in other parts of the 
house. If the walls are new and 
smooth, tint them in waterproof ce- 
ment or paint them with water colors 
and coat with soluble glass. Both 
these processes are inexpensive. 

Or washable paper is excellent. It 
can be washed and kept perfectly 
clean, and does not absorb grease or 
moisture. 

Or paint the walls with common oU 



paint of good quality and finish with 
a coat of enamel paint or soluble 
glass, so that they can be mopped the 
same as the floor. For this purpose 
fit a large sponge into a mop handle. 
But paint is not as easy to wash down 
as washable paper or oilcloth, hence, 
where the walls are in go'od condition, 
the latter is preferable. 

Kitchen Floor. — A tight, smooth 
floor of unpainted wood, hard enough 
not to splinter and to admit of being 
scrubbed, is perhaps the best floor for 
a kitchen. But if the floor is of soft 
wood, or is uneven and has unsightly 
cracks in it, the cracks may be filled 
and the floor painted with oil paints, 
and varnish or " lac " paints contain- 
ing varnish may be used. 

Or the floor may be covered with 
linoleum, which is perhaps, all things 
considered, the most satisfactory floor 
covering. Before laying the linoleum 
on a rough floor, cover the floor with 
<x layer of sand, or sawdust, or old 
newspapers, to prevent its being worn 
by the cracks, and give the linoleum 
a coat of paint and varnish three or 
four times a year. When thus treated 
it is practically indestructible. 

Or oilcloth may be substituted for 
linoleum and cared for in the same 
fashion. This is inexpensive, and with 
proper care will last a long time. 

Kitchen Sinks. — The sink may be of 
iron or other metal, with or without 
enamel, or of stone, or even of wood 
lined with lead, tin, or zinc. But it 
should stand on four legs, and all the 
waste pipe should be exposed to sun 
and air. Take away all woodwork 
from about the sink, and paint the 
pipes and under part the same color 
as the walls and woodwork. 

If the air is admitted freely to all 
parts, no moisture can accumulate to 
cause the decay of organic matter 
which produces diphtheria, typhoid 
and other fevers. Physicians say that 
when these diseases occur in any 
household, the first thing they look at 
is the sink and the arrangements for 
drainage about the kitchen door. Each 
day rinse the dishpan with boiling 
water in which dissolve a tablespoon- 



HOUSE FURNISHING AND DECORATING 



75 



ful or more of washing soda or aqua 
ammonia, and pour it down the spout 
boiling hot. Once a week flush the 
pipes by filling the sink with boiling 
water, in which dissolve a teacupful 
of chloride of lime. Use a quantity 
of water great enough so that it will 
run through the pipes with force. 
This is the best disinfectant, is cheap, 
and just as good as any patent 
preparation. 

Have the drainage carried to a suf- 
ficient distance from the house into a 
covered cesspool, whence it will leach 
off into the soil, and see that it does 
not leach into the well. Never throw 
dishwater from the kitchen door. 
Have a receptacle for aU garbage, 
and feed it regularly to the chickens, 
or, if no fowls are kept, see that it is 
burned, buried, or at least removed to 
a distance from the house. Scald the 
garbage receptacle vrith a solution of 
chloride of lime — ^half a teacupful to 
a quart of water — ^twice a week. 

Kitchen Table. — A bench or table, 
homemade if necessary, at the left of 




' Homemade it Necessary. 



the kitchen sink and as large as the 
room will admit, is indispensable to 
saving steps in the kitchen. Have this 



overlap the edge of the sink and cover 
with zinc, which will not rust. Turn 
up the zinc over a molding around the 
sides of the table, except at the end 
over the sink, so that water will drain 
back from it into the latter. Carry 
ths zinc, if possible, eighteen inches 
or two feet up the kitchen wall be- 
hind the table and the sink. This is 
lasting, easily kept clean, and is not 
injured by hot pans or kettles. If 
scrubbed clean it can be used as a 
molding board. Particles of dough 
which adhere to it can easily be 
scraped off with a knife. Zinc that 
has done duty under a stove may be 
used for a kitchen table. Cut a V 
out of the corners, lap over the edges, 
and nail closely with long, sharp steel 
tacks. 

Or cover the kitchen table with oil- 
cloth. This wiU last a long time if 
the table is padded with sheet wad- 
ding or several thicknesses of news- 
paper covered with an old sheet. 
Draw the padding smooth and tack 
it under the edge of the table. 

Kitchen Rack for TTtensils. — Cover 
the wall back of the kitchen table and 
sink with zinc or oilcloth about two 
feet in height, tacking a strip of inch- 
thick pine or other soft wood about 
three inches vnde along the top. Along 
the middle of this fasten a narrow 
strip of leather or a strip of doubled 
oilcloth, with tacks at intervals of one 
and a. half or two inches, making 
loops through which cooking spoons, 
knives, forks, can openers, etc., may 
be thrust. Thus these articles are 
always in sight and ready for use. 
Above put up a number of six- or 
eight-inch shelves to any desired height 
to hold breakfast foods, coffee, salt, 
pepper and other spices, glass jars or 
tin cans containing nuts, rice, beans, 
sugar, and various dry groceries. On 
the upper shelves can be stored soap, 
canned goods, and the like. Insert 
hooks on the under side of the lower 
shelf to hold measuring cups, tin pails, 
or anything that can be hung up out 
of the way. Cover the shelves with 
oilcloth so that they can be kept clean. 
Hang from the cleat against the wall 



76 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



a board of any desired size, say 16 by 
24, which may be of weathered oak 
or any hard-wood stuff cleated to pre- 
vent warping. In this screw small 
brass hooks on which to hang the 
strainer, baking spoon, egg whip, 
roasting fork, meat cleaver, bread 
toaster, etc. These shelves and the 
rack save thousands of steps to the 
pantry and take the place of a costly 
kitchen cabinet. 

Blotters in the Kitchen. — Obtain a 
supply of ordinary desk blotters and 
have a place for them on the rack 
above the kitchen table. If fruit juice 
or grease spatters or spills on cloth- 
ing or table linen apply the edge or 
corner of a clean blotter, and most of 
the liquid will be taken up. 

Or, if grease is spilled on the floor, 
a blotter will take it up quickly while 
warm and save the labor of removing 
a grease spot that has soaked into the 
boards. 

Tin Back. — Hang near the range a 
plate rack, which may be homemade, 
or fasten a cleat against the wall for 
tin lids, kettle covers, pie tins, and 
the like. Thus these are always dry 
and convenient. 

Pantry Shelves. — Paint the pantry 
shelves white, or cover them with a 
coat of white enamel. Wash the 
shelves with cold water as soon as 
the enamel dries, and it will harden 
quickly. Such shelves will not require 
oilcloth or paper, can be easily wiped 
oft with a damp cloth, and always 
show when perfectly clean. 

Or cover the shelves with white oil- 
cloth. Cut the oilcloth to exactly fit 
the shelf, turn down over the edge, 
and paste on. While somewhat ex- 
pensive, this lasts for years, cleans 
easily, and always looks well. 

Or use ordinary building paper, 
which is better than newspaper and 
by the roll is very cheap. It can be 
wiped off with a damp cloth almost 
as easily as paint. 

Or use washable paper, the same as 
kitchen walls are hung with, pasting 
it to the shelves. 

Or, if newspapers are used, fold a 
whole newspaper the longest way of 



the full sheets and place the fold in. 
the front of the shelf. Then when 
cleaning the pantry it is only neces- 
sary to slip a paper cutter in the fold 
of the outer sheet, cut it clear across, 
and take off the soiled upper part. 

Tack a narrow strip of wood (any 
left-over pieces of picture molding 
will do) along the back of the pantry 
shelves, about three inches from the 
wall. To save space, stand platters 
and large plates with their edges rest- 
ing against this. 

Run a one-inch strip of wood against 
the wall, held away from it by wooden 
brackets; in this put kettle lids and 
covers of all sizes. 

Screw suitable hooks on the under 
side of the shelves for dishes having 
handles, as pitchers, cups, and the like. 

Dampness in Closets. — Place a bowl 
of quicklime in a damp pantry, cup- 
board, or closet. This not only re- 
moves dampness, but kills all odors. 

Kange Shelves. — Have near the 
range a shelf to hold the many things 
needed in cooking, as pepper, salt, 
and other seasonings, flavorings, and 
the like, to save steps to the pantry 
or to the shelves over the kitchen 
table. Have another shelf covered 
with zinc on which to put down hot 
kettles and articles taken fresh from 
the baking oven. 




"Mounted on Large Casters." 



Rolling Table.— Have made at home 
or by a carpenter a small, strong table 
about 2 feet or 24 by 3 feet, mounted 



HOUSE FURNISHING AND DECORATING 



77 



on large casters or small wheels, which 
can be bought at small expense at a 
hardware store. Have a shelf part 
way down in addition to the top. 
When clearing or setting the dining- 
room table load this serving table and 
draw it to and from the kitchen. 
Thus one trip will do for all. 

Kitchen Slate. — Try making a pro- 
gramme each morning of the things 
to be done through the day. Or jot 
down from time to time those that 
must be done at the first opportunity. 
You will be surprised to find how 
quickly these things will be disposed 
of. When cooking or preparing com- 
pany dinner, make a list of the arti- 
cles to be prepared, and glance at it 
occasionally. 

Homemade Receipt Book. — Have at 
hand a blank book in which to paste 
or copy valuable recipes. Cover this 
with white oilcloth neatly pasted on. 
Have a special part of this book or a 
separate book for menus. This will 
help to solve the problem of what to 
have for dinner. 

Kitchen Lounge. — Remove the old 
sofa to the kitchen, and put in Its 
place a modern couch with an artistic 
couch cover. 

Or make a homemade lounge out of 
a long packing box or tack together 
two of the right height. Put on a 
cover with hinges. Line with wall 
paper or building paper. Make a 
suitable mattress which may be stuffed 
with straw, husks, or any convenient 
material, and cover with any suitable 
material as cretonne, baize, or calico. 
Or use washable material, as red-and- 
white bed ticking. The mattress may 
be adjusted so that the lid can be 
lifted and the inside used as a re- 
ceptacle for various purposes. While 
waiting for the kettle to boll, for 
bread to rise, and the like, drop down 
on the kitchen lounge and rest. It is 
just such little economies of strength 
that in the long run save time and 
preserve health. 

SMALL EC0IT0MIE3 

The reason many things are wasted 
in every household is that the family 



has not formed the habit of making 
uses for them. The following ways to 
use string, paper bags, wrapping pa- 
per and newspapers, lard pails, and 
various cans and bottles that come 
into the house every day from the 
grocers and other merchants, will be 
found Hot only useful small econo- 
mies but also valuable household con- 
veniences. 

TTses of Common Twine. — Save all 
bits of string or twine, and teach the 
children to sort them and knot the 
different sizes together. Roll the com- 
mon white twine up into a ball, drop 
it inside a box, with the end protrud- 
ing through a hole in the lid. Or use 
the accumulated twine to knit or cror 
chet dishcloths eight to twelve inches 
square. Bath slippers can also be 
made of it. 

Wind poarse twine on a roller or 
fishline reel and hang it up on the 
back of the pantry door. 

Paper Bags. — These are not only 
convenient to wrap up articles, but 
are especially useful to polish stoves 
and lamp chimneys, to wipe up milk, 
grease, or what not, as they can be 
quickly disposed of by burning when 
soiled. 

Tissue Paper. — This is useful for 
polishing glass, wrapping up laces, 
ribbons, and other delicate articles. 

Oiled Papers. — Oiled papers that 
come over butter and lard may be 
used for papering cake tins. The 
waxed papers that come on the inside 
of cracker or biscuit boxes are useful 
to wrap up cheese and other articles 
which will deteriorate if exposed to 
the air, also for wrapping lunches, for 
school and factory lunch pails, and 
picnics. 

Wrapping Paper .^This may be used 
to slice bread and cake upon, roll 
crackers, pare apples or potatoes, and 
dress chickens on, after which it may 
be rolled up and dropped into the 
garbage pail. 

Or it may be spread over the gar- 
bage pail and all garbage placed on 
it to save trouble in cleaning. 

Flour Bags. — Large paper flour 
bags are useful for bleaching gloves 



78 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



and other small articles with the 
fumes of sulphur, and dry cleaning 
with magnesia, corn meal, and similar 
substances. The cloth sacks may be 
used for dish towels and dishcloths. 

When emptying flour sacks, a small 
amount of flour will adhere to the 
sack. Turn the sack inside out, lay it 
over the molding board, and knead 
the bread upon it. This wiU cleanse 
it effectually. 

Newspapers. — Spread clean news- 
papers under the carpet, especially if 
the floor is rough. They make a 
smooth surface, prevent wear, and 
also check draughts through the floor 
cracks. Also use them for polishing 
windows, mirrors, lamp chimneys, 
stove tops, and nickel. 

Spread a newspaper before the stove 
when taking up ashes. Light news- 
paper in the open grate when taking 
up ashes, or shaking down a grate 
fire. The resulting draught will carry 
the dust up the chimney. 

Cover plants on frosty nights with 
newspapers, or if indoors, put them 
between the plants and the windows. 
Fold a newspaper across the chest 
and attach with safety pins under the 
cloak or coat when exposed for a long 
time in cold winds, as in sleigh- 
riding. 

Also use newspapers for wrapping 
furs, velvets, and other articles when 
storing them to protect them from 
moths. 

Tin Cans. — Lard, kerosene, and 
other oils are sold in various parts of 
the country in five-gallon cans. These 
can be obtained from the grocer for 
a small sum and make excellent boil- 
ers to wash out small articles too 
dainty for the regular wash. They 
can also be used with a small wash- 
board as tubs. 

Or they may be used as flour bins, 
bread or cake boxes, and the like. 

Or, by removing the top and making 
holes at each side and attaching short 
pieces of copper wire with a broom 
handle between, convenient pails may 
be made out of them. These pails 
may be made of any desired depth by 
cutting off the can with a cold chisel 



and hammer and turning back the 
sharp edges. 

Such cans are also convenient to salt 
down pickles, steam fruit, etc. 

lard Pails. — These may be used for 
storing sugar, coffee, cereals, and rice. 
Or for potting plants, especially as 
hanging baskets. They are also use- 
ful both in five- and ten-pound sizes 
for steaming brown bread and Indian 
puddings. A five-pound lard pail 
placed inside a ten-pound paU, and 
slightly raised from the bottom of 
the latter by small stones or otherwise, 
forms a good substitute for a double 
boiler. 

Or an earthen j ar or common sauce- 
pan may be used for the outer recep- 
tacle, and rice, cracked wheat, oat- 
meal, prunes, etc., may be cooked 
without danger of burning. 

They are also useful for storing 
and carrying milk, butter, and eggs. 

Baking-powder and Cocoa Cans. — 
One of these cans, with a. few nail 
holes in each end, is a good soap 
shaker. This will utilize all the scraps 
of soap. 

Or soak off the wrappers, paint 
these cans with any color of enameled 
paint, and label them with gilt or any 
other colored letters. Use these for 
all sorts of spices, which may be 
bought in bulk much cheaper than in 
cans. These cans are air-tight and will 
preserve the strength of the contents. 

Or use for this purpose empty vase- 
line and cold-cream jars with screw 
tops. These being of glass, their con- 
tents can be seen at a glance, and no 
labeling is required. 

Cereal Boxes. — The stiff pasteboard 
boxes in which breakfast foods are 
sold may be labeled and set in a row 
on the pantry shelf. When paper 
bags of dry groceries come from the 
grocer's, they may be dumped in the 
proper box, thus saving the time and 
trouble of opening first one sack and 
then another to find the right article. 
Use these for rice, beans, tapioca, corn 
meal, oatmeal, starch, salt, hominy, 
buckwheat, sugar, etc. 

Labels. — Everything should be la- 
beled for the convenience of every 



HOUSE FURNISHING AND DECORATING 



79 



member of the family. Beat up the 
white of an egg and dilute with a pint 
of warm water. On ironing day ap- 
ply this both to the label and to the 
glass or tin, and afterwards run a hot 
iron over the surface to set it. Tack 
pasteboard tags on wooden boxes, and 
on bags containing pieces of cloth of 
all descriptions tie cloth labels. 

Kitchen Cabinet. — A good kitchen 
cabinet, with metal bins for flour, 
meal, and other substances that mice 
are fond of, is an investment which 
will save time and strength for the 




"A Good Kitchen Cabinei. 



housekeeper and will be a money 
saver in the long run. These bins 
should be removable, so that they can 
be regularly washed, scalded, and 
dried. 

To Order Groceries. — A child's school 
slate hung on a nail in the wall of a 
kitchen, with a slate pencil attached 
by a strong cord, will be found a 
great convenience in ordering gro- 
ceries. When any supplies run low, 
make a note on the slate of what is 
wanted. The whole family will soon 
get into the habit of making these 
memoranda, and many steps in run- 
,ning errands will be saved. Also make 
an alphabetical list of groceries in a 
little indexed alphabetical memoran- 
dum book and hang this up on the 
same nail. When the grocer calls 



run over this list to refresh your 
mind. 

If the various dry groceries, as tapi- 
oca, rice, raisins, etc., are kept in glass 
jars, it will be easy to see what is 
wanted, and they will be protected 
from mice and insects. Fruit jars 
of various sizes are useful for this 
purpose. 

Or use a pad and pencil to keep 
memoranda of articles wanted. The 
paper can then be detached when go- 
ing to market and forms a convenient 
memorandum. 

Storeroom. — A cellar having a ce- 
ment floor and water-tight walls, if 
kept clean and sanitary, makes an 
ideal storeroom, but many houses do 
not have one. A small storeroom can be 
made in a corner of the cellar at much 
less cost than is commonly supposed, 
by putting up waUs of concrete made 
of sand or gravel and cement. Rough 
boards may be knocked together with 
very little trouble to make a mold. 
The cellar walls, if they are tight and 
dry, will make two sides; or they can 
be faced with cement by building a 
board-retaining wall an inch or two 
from the surface of the cellar wall 
and pouring the cement back of it. 
The whole, including the floor, can 
thus be made solid concrete at a 
trifling cost. When furnished with a 
suitable door, this storeroom ' will be 
damp proof and free from dust, 
germs, and all other unsanitary pests. 
There should be a cellar window pro- 
tected on the outside by wire netting, 
and having on the inside a removable 
screen of cheese cloth to keep out the 
dust. 

Slat shelves painted with white 
paint and a coat of enamel may be 
built up in this storeroom in the same 
manner as book stacks in a library, 
i. c, back to back, with just enough 
room between them for a person to 
walk. On these shelves preserves, 
pickles, canned goods, butter, eggs, 
and other groceries can be stored the 
year round in perfect safety. 

In a cellar thus equipped can be 
stored canned goods and other gro- 
ceries bought at wholesale when prices 



80 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



are low, thus saving in many cases 
26 per cent of the cost of such 
articles. 

Door Mat. — A great deal of mud is 
tracked in at the kitchen door. Make 
door mats of several thicknesses of 
old carpets, turning in the raw edges 
and sewing them together with carpet 
tacks. Attach stout loops to the cor- 
ners and fasten these over strong nails 
on the porch floor. These keep the 
mat in shape and place, and allow it 
to be readily removed and cleaned. 

Verandas. — One of the most notable 
changes that have come over American 




'Living Out of Doors. 



life in recent years is the increase in 
the custom of living out of doors. 
The old-fashioned porch, formerly a 
mere rain shed over the doorstep, or 
small outer vestibule, is being gener- 
ally replaced by a vdde structure ex- 



tending a considerable distance along 
one side of the house, if not entirely 
along two or more sides. The words 
"porch" or "piazza" are often im- 
properly applied to these improve- 
ments in place of the right name, 
"veranda," a word coming from India, 
which suggests a kind of living room 
out of doors. It is becoming more 
and more customary to furnish the 
veranda with suitable furniture that 
wiU not be harmed by exposure to the 
air, and use it in summer as a living 
room. 

Many verandas have regular win- 
dow casings fitted with removable 
hinged frames for glass and screens, 
and with ordinary roller shades, so as 
to admit, when desired, of all the 
privacy of an indoor apartment. By 
means of one or more suitable low 
tables, chairs, and other necessary ar- 
ticles, tea or lunch may be served on 
the veranda, sewing may be done, call- 
ers entertained, and social entertain- 
ments given. 

Suitable vines, as the clematis, Ma- 
deira vine, woodbine, or passion flower 
may be trained to run around the 
veranda and furnish grateful shade 
and privacy. A box couch in a shel- 
tered spot against the wall will be 
found useful as a receptacle for ham- 
mocks, old shoes, and various articles 
used about the lawn and grounds. It 
may be ^tted with a suitable padlock, 
and chained or otherwise fastened to 
the walls. 



CHAPTER II 

HEATING, LIGHTING, AND REFRIGERATION 

KINDS OF FUEL—HEATING SYSTEMS— CfflMNEYS AND FLUES— FIRE 
EXTINGUISHERS AND FIRE ESCAPES— FIREPROOFING AND 
WATERPROOFING — ARTIFICIAL ILLUMINATION — COAL GAS, 
GASOLINE GAS, AND ACETYLENE— KEROSENE OIL— CANDLES 
AND CANDLE MAKING— INDUSTRIAL ALCOHOL— WATER SUP- 
PLY—ICE AND REFRIGERATION 



KINDS OF FUEL 

The principal kinds of fuel used in 
this country are anthracite or hard, 
and bituminous or soft, coal, coke, 
gas, petroleum or kerosene, and wood, 
either hard or soft. Peat or turf 
fuel is quite common in European 
countries, and some attempts have 
been made to introduce it in the 
United States in the form of " bri- 
quettes " and " eggettes," but thus 
far without much success. The cost 
of the various kinds of fuel naturally 
varies according to local conditions, 
but where all kinds are equally plenti- 
ful, wood is the most expensive. About 
eighteen cords of the best hard wood 
is required to heat the home of an 
average family for a year. At six 
dollars a cord this would cost nine 
dollars a month. Anthracite or hard 
coal is the next most expensive fuel; 
its first cost is higher and it is not an 
economical fuel to use, the estimated 
cost of heating an average home with 
hard coal being about seven dollars a 
month. The cheapest forms of fuel 
in common use are bituminous or soft 
coal and coke. Where plenty of coke 
is available it may be regarded as 
perhaps the cheapest fuel, its cost 
being estimated on an average of 
about five dollars a month in tem- 
perate latitudes. Bituminous coal is, 
ton for ton, cheaper than coke, but as 
jsomewhat more is required for fuel. 



the cost may be regarded as prac- 
tically the same. Gas is, perhaps, the 
ideal fuel. It Is clean, convenient, and 
when the price is not unduly advanced 
by monopolistic control, it is cheaper 
than any other fuel. Under present 
conditions it is usually somewhat 
more expensive, although the extra 
cost is, perhaps, more than made up 
by increased convenience and effi- 
ciency. 

Coal as Fuel. — Coal in its natural 
state consists of solid carbon com- 
bined with various proportions of 
hydrocarbons (or compounds of car- 
bon with hydrogen, which may be 
driven off in the form of illuminating 
gas) and various impurities. Thus 
coal is really made up of two kinds of 
fuel: coke — ^which is practically all car- 
bon — and ordinary illuminating gas. 
It is much more convenient and satis- 
factory to use coal in these two sepa- 
rate forms than in its natural state. 
Very little bituminous or soft coal is 
used for domestic purposes in most 
parts of the United States, notwith- 
standing its cheapness, because of the 
dirt, dust, coal gas, and cinders con- 
sequent upon its use. Anthracite or 
hard coal is somewhat less trouble- 
some, but its use is wasteful because 
little more than the hydrocarbons 
driven off as gas is really consumed, 
the remainder being left in the form 
of cinders, which are usually thrown 
away. 



81 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVEEIES 



Sizes of Coal. — The large sizes of 
coal are the most wasteful, as the 
volatile gases are rarely all driven off 
and the heart of the large chunks is 
not usually consumed. The result is 
a residue of cinders and clinkers that 
choke up the grate and create a great 
deal of labor and discomfort. By the 
use of suitable grates and some care 
and attention, the smallest sizes of 
coal (which are also ton for ton much 
cheaper) may be utilized. 

Coal — Small Sizes to TTse. — The 
smallest size of coal in ordinary use 
is known as " pea coal." This requires 
a special grate, but after a fire has 
been kindled in an ordinary grate, and 
a good bed of coals has been made, 
pea coal may be used if care is taken 
not to shake down aU the ashes at 
once. There is a still smaller size 
known as " buckwheat coal," which is 
even cheaper than pea coal. This may 
be used in place of cinders to bank 
down the fires at night, the advantage 
being that when coke or larger coal is 
added to the fire next morning, the 
buckwheat coal will be entirely con- 
sumed, whereas a bank of cinders tends 
to deaden the fire during the day. 

Coke as Fuel. — Coke fs produced in 
large quantities as a by-product of 
illuminating gas, and in the vicinity 
of gas plants in cities it is usually 
sold at low prices. Coke is cleaner 
than coal (whether bard or soft), 
easier to kindle, burns more freely, 
and leaves a much smaller residue of 
ash, with practically no cinders or 
clinkers. The principal objection to 
its use is, that unless care is taken it 
may produce too hot a fire. But this 
difBculty may be overcome by bank- 
ing the fire after it is well kindled 
with buckwheat or pea coal. 

Gas as Fuel. — The advantages of 
gas as fuel are manifold, and its use, 
especially for cooking purposes, is be- 
ing rapidly extended. It is clean, 
convenient, and efficient, and will be 
the most economical fuel when proper 
arrangements are made for selling it 
to the public at a reasonable profit. 
It is probable that good gas can be 
manufactured and sold to the public 



in most localities in the neighborhood 
of fifty cents a thousand, and that 
under stress of competition new and 
approved appliances might be pro- 
duced that would decrease still fur- 
ther the cost of manufacture. Even 
at prices ranging from $1 to $1.50 
and upward per thousand, the use of 
gas, if proper care is observed, must 
be regarded as economical. 

HSATING SYSTEUS 

The principal systems of heating 
dwelling houses are the use of steam, 
hot water or hot air, generated by 
furnaces (located usually in a base- 
ment or cellar), and the use of closed 
coal, oil, or gas stoves, or of open 
grates, which may be placed in stoves 
or in fireplaces. Each of these sys- 
tems has its advantages and disad- 
vantages, but, disregarding the first 
cost, it is probable that, from the 
double standpoint of efficiency and 
economy, they may all be rated about 
as follows: First, steam; second, hot 
water; third, hot air; fourth, the 
open grate; fifth, the closed coal 
stove; sixth, closed oil stove; seventh, 
closed gas stove. 

Furnaces. — Furnaces vary greatly 
in the amount of coal that they con- 




"Most Notable is the Underfeed System." 

sume to produce a given temperature. 
At best only a small percentage of 



HEATING, LIGHTING, AND REFRIGERATION 



83 



the actual heat value of the fuel is 
realized, and the future will doubtless 
witness great improvement in this di- 
rection. At present a number of new 
devices are on the market, of which 
one of the most notable is the under- 
feed system. This furnace is so con- 
structed that the fuel is deposited in 
a chamber below the fire box, where 
it is gradually warmed before being 
forced from below by means of a 
lever into the fire box. Thus the heat 
is saved which is wasted in other types 
of furnaces by raising the tempera- 
ture of cold fuel thrown directly upon 
the blaze, and less fuel is consumed 
to produce a given increase of tem- 
perature. There is also less unneces- 
sary combustion. The difference may 
be illustrated by the burning of two 
candles, one right side up and the 
other upside down. The former con- 



The saving in the use of these devices 
would far exceed the difference in the 
first cost, even if they were much 




"An Inevitable Waste." 

sumes no more fuel than is necessary; 
the latter produces an inevitable waste. 

Another device consists in a perfo- 
rated plate of metal, placed across 
the fire box so that the flame is broken 
up into a large number of small jets 
of burning gas. The plate also be- 
comes exceedingly hot and thus assists 
the combustion of the gases. 

Other important devices are means 
to prevent heat from being wasted by 
radiation in the cellar or basement or 
by escaping up the chimney. The in- 
direct-draught furnace contains a de- 
vice which causes the heated products 
of combustion to circulate in such a 
way, before going up the chimney, as 
to heat every part of the furnace. 




" Hot-water Radiation." 

more expensive than other types of 
heating apparatus, which is not neces- 
sarily the case. Hence, their univer- 
sal use is to be recommended. 

Steam and Hot-water Heating Sys- 
tems. — The first cost of installing a 
steam or hot-water system is consid- 
erable, and both require a good deal 
of care to produce satisfactory results. 
They also demand some provision for 
ventilation, which is an additional ex- 
pense. Both steam heat and hot wa- 
ter are difficult to adjust to sudden 
changes of temperature. In mild 
weather, steam heat is not economical, 
because the furnace must be kept hot 
enough to boU water in order to pro- 
duce any steam at all, and hot-water 
heat is inconvenient, since, if the 
weather becomes suddenly mild when 
the pipes are filled with hot water, the 
house will be too warm. On the other 
hand, if the water is allowed to cool 
and the temperature again changes, 
considerable time is required in either 
system to reheat the boiler. 

Thermostat. — The most satisfactory 
results with the steam and hot-water 
systems are obtained by the installa- 
tion of the thermostat, an instrument 
which can be adjusted at any given 
temperature, so that if the heat falls 
below this standard the furnace 
draught will be automatically opened ; 
if it rises above, the furnace draught 
will be closed. Thus a uniform tem- 
perature can be maintained with the 
least possible attention. 



84 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



The Ideal System. — Probably the 
ideal system of heating is the so-called 
vacuum steam system, by which a par- 
tial vacuum is formed in the steam 




"It the Heat Falls . . . the DraugU Opens." 

pipes. Thus, steam may be produced 
in the pipes at a temperature below 
212°. An attachment, known as the 
automatic vacuum valve, which pro- 
duces a similar effect, can be supplied 
to ordinary steam radiators. Prob- 
ably, then, an underfeed, indirect- 
draught furnace with a system of 
ventilation and a suitable thermostat, 
while somewhat expensive to install, 
would give the most perfect and sat- 
isfactory results. 

Hot-air Systems. — The advantages 
of the hot-air system of heating, after 
the first cost of installation, are that 
it does not require a supplementary 
system of ventilation, can be easily 
cared for, and readily adjusted to 
changes in temperature. The disad- 
vantages oftenest complained of are 
the dust and gases that sometimes rise 
from the register, the difficulty caused 
by high winds blowing into the cold- 
air boxes, and dryness of the atmos- 
phere caused by delivering the heated 
air at too high a temperature. But 
these disadvantages may be overcome 



by proper construction and installa- 
tion. 

To Prevent Dust. — Dust may tind 
its way either from above or from 
below into the stream of warm air 
that rises from the register. To pre- 
vent its rise from below, the outer 
opening of the cold-ajr box may be 
screened with cheese cloth or other 
thin fabric, and over the seams of the 
cold-air box and flues may be placed 
a metal protector with tightly soldered 
joints. Thus the gases and any foul 
air that may be in the cellar will be 
excluded from the draught, and the 
supply of air coming in from out of 
doors win be fresh and pure as well 
as warm. To prevent dust from en- 
tering the flue from above, the regis- 
ters should be closed while sweeping 
and should be removed each day after 
sweeping and dusted out of the win- 
dow ; one or more thicknesses of cheese 
cloth or netting should be stretched 
under the register and across the flue 
so as to screen the current of air as 
it rises. Registers set in the wall 
naturally receive less dust from sweep- 
ing than floor registers do. They also 
give the warm air a somewhat better 
circulation. 

How to Regulate Hot Air. — Hot 
air is a misnomer. Overheated air 
is detrimental to health and also in- 
jurious to woodwork and furniture. 
The term " warm air " is preferred by 
most authorities, and the best results 
are secured by having a relatively 
large furnace that, by delivering a 
large quantity of air at a moderate 
temperature, will heat the house com- 
fortably in the coldest weather. The 
air should not be delivered at a tem- 
perature greater than 120°, and under 
no circumstance should the fires be 
allowed to rage until the fire box is 
red hot. 

To Overcome Dryness. — The dry- 
ness of the atmosphere caused by the 
warm-air furnace may be overcome 
by keeping a supply of water in the 
receptacle usually furnished for that 
purpose inside the jacket of the fur- 
nace; or by hanging a small tin pail 
of galvanized iron from a hook below 



HEATING, LIGHTING, AND REFRIGERATION 



85 



one or more of the registers in the 
room, so that the current of air there- 
from will receive a small amount of 
moisture. 

Hot Air — To Prevent Waste. — A 
great saving can be effected by casing 
the jacket of the furnace and the 
hot-air pipes with several thicknesses 
of asbestos paper to prevent direct 
radiation in the basement. Heat 
which would otherwise be wasted may 
also be utilized by the addition of a 
hot-water attachment. This combina- 
tion of the hot-air and hot-water sys- 
tems affords, perhaps, the greatest 




"The Same Flue Will Serve Two Registers. 



possible economy in fuel. The hot- 
water piping may be us'ed in distrib- 
uting the heat to any parts of the 
house not equipped with the hot-air 
system. When possible, the hot-air 
flues should be so adjusted that the 
same flue will serve two or more reg- 
isters. Thus, by closing the register 
in the lower rooms, the heat can be 



diverted through the same flue to "the 
upper part of the house, with the least 
possible number of pipes and waste 
of heat. 

The Prankliu Stove. — The cele- 
brated device invented in 1782 by 
Benjamin Franklin, and called by him 
the " Pennsylvania fireplace," is still 
in some respects the most satisfactory 
contrivance in existence for heating 
individual rooms. Oddly enough, ia 
modern stoves of this pattern a prin- 
cipal feature of Franklin's invention 
has been neglected. The Franklin 
stove had an air chamber behind the 
grate, communicating with the outer 
air through a pipe passing beneath 
the hearth ; by this means a current of 
pure, warm air was admitted to the 
room for ventilation. If this device 
could be revived and widely adver- 
tised, there is no doubt that its supe- 
rior advantages would be generally 
recognized. The modern Franklin 
stove is similar to an ordinary closed 
stove except for its open hearth. It 
combines the cheerful open grate of 
a fireplace with economy of the heat 
lost in a fireplace by passing up the 
chimney. The Franklin stove can be 
connected by means of stovepipe with 
an ordinary flue. 

Closed Stoves. — Closed stoves burn- 
ing coal, oil, or gas as fuel are, of 
course, in very general use for heat- 
ing individual apartments. Of these, 
the coal stove has the very decided 
advantage that the products of com- 
bustion pass through the stovepipes 
into the chimney, whereas both gas 
and oil stoves vitiate the air with car- 
bonic-acid gas and other injurious 
substances. For this reason, gas logs 
and gas grates should not be used ex- 
cept immediately under a. chimney 
flue, nor should small gas stoves or 
oil stoves be used in living rooms 
or bedchambers without abundant ven- 
tilation. 

Open Grates. — The old-fashioned 
open fireplace is the most cheerful 
and sanitary means of heating, and 
would be by all means to be preferred 
were it not that so much of the heat 
escapes up the chimney. It has been 



86 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



estimated that only 5 per cent of 
it is thrown into the room. A re- 
cent invention known as the venti- 
lating grate overcomes this difficulty. 
This is an open furnace, to which 
fresh outdoor air is introduced by 
pipes which pass below the hearth and 
are heated by circulating around the 
grate, and flues through which the 
products of combustion escape. The 
pure air thus warmed is admitted into 
the rooms through registers. By a 
suitable arrangement of the flues, the 
warm air from the ventilating grate 
can be distributed through the walls 
to adjacent or upper rooms, and thus 
two or more of these grates can heat 
a house of six or eight rooms at less 
cost than a furnace. 

Open fireplaces may also be profit- 
ably utilized for supplementary heat 
in connection with different systems, 
as they afford the most perfect system 
of ventilation obtainable. 

Economy of Stove Heat. — The heat 
from an ordinary stove or a Franklin 
stove may be economized and utilized 
in upper rooms by adjusting a mod- 
ern drum radiator to the stovepipe. 
A number of small tubes within the 
drum absorb the heat and radiate it 
into the apartment. The open flames 
of lamps and gas jets also give a good 
deal of heat which can be utilized by 
equipping them with small detachable 
radiators that operate on the same 
principle. 

Gasoline Stoves. — Those who have 
generator gasoline stoves often com- 
plain that the gasoline smokes and 
ruins wall paper. To avoid this gen- 
erate the fire with wood alcohol. Keep 
the alcohol in » glass bottle holding 
about a quart. Or a machine-oil can 
holding about a pint will be found 
convenient. If the latter is used, a 
piece of cork should be inserted in 
the end of the spout to keep the gaso- 
line from evaporating. Or use a piece 
of Irish potato for this purpose. 

Pour a little alcohol in the gen- 
erator cup, and light it the same as 
gaspline. 

Gas Stoves. — These are of two sorts, 
adapted for heating and cooking re- 



spectively. Gas stoves for heating 
may be obtained in a variety of sizes, 
from small cylinders to large-sized 
stoves of the radiator pattern. These 
are cleanly, cheap, and efficient, and 
have nothing about them to get out 
of order. Gas stoves for cooking may 
be had in all sizes, from the one- 
burner stove of the hot-plate type, 
costing about $1, to the gas kitchen 
range, ranging in price up to $50. 
The average type is a two-oven range 
that will broil, roast, or bake, and can 
be fitted with laundry conveniences. 
The standard size has two 16- or 18- 
inch ovens, and is provided on top 
with one double and three single burn- 
ers. These are equal to every require- 
ment of a complete kitchen range, and 




"Demonstrate Superiority in Summer.' 



unlike the latter have no fire brick to 
burn out, or other parts likely to be- 
come warped, cracked, or injured. A 
gas range has every possibility of 
service of a coal range except heat- 
ing, but of course demonstrates its 
greatest superiority in the summer 
months, when cooking can be done 
with a minimum of heat and fuel con- 
sumption. 

The temperature of a gas oven can 
always be accurately gauged, and it is 
possible to have a slow fire and a hot 
fire at the same time, on differeht 
parts of the gas range, which is im- 



HEATING, LIGHTING, AND REFRIGERATION 87 



possible with a coal range. Further, 
a gas range is always clean, requires 
no blacking, kindling, or carrying of 
coal, removal of ashes, and similar 
nuisances. 

Gas Water Heaters. — A gas water- 
heating appliance attached to an or- 
dinary kitchen boiler will consume 
about thirty feet of gas in an hour 
for a thirty-gallon boiler, or forty to 
forty-five feet for a sixty- to eighty- 
gallon boiler. A smaller quantity of 
hot water for ordinary household pur- 
poses can be heated in ten or fifteen 
minutes at a cost of less than one 
cent. A similar appliance may be put 
into the bathroom, which would heat 
water sufficient for a bath at a cost 
of from two to three cents. This is 
an ideal summer arrangement. But 
care must be taken that accidents do 
not occur with these, by persons lock- 
ing the bathroom door and being over- 
come by the gas. 

CHIMNEYS AND FLUES 

Chimneys have a twofold object — 
to remove the smoke and gases pro- 
duced by combustion, and to produce 
a draught to increase the rate of com- 
bustion. They were first introduced 
in Europe about the twelfth century. 
The first chimney in Rome was built 
in 1368. Chimneys did not come into 
general use in Europe until the seven- 
teenth century. Formerly — and to this 
day in many parts of the world — fires 
were built on stone or earthen hearths 
in the center of the room, the prod- 
ucts of combustion being allowed to 
escape through a hole in the middle 
of the roof. 

The draught produced by a chimney 
depends upon its height and propor- 
tions. The higher the chimney, the 
better the draught. The flue should 
be about one fifth or one sixth the 
area of the grate. 

Chimneys are the best of ventila- 
tors, hence there should be one or 
more extending from the bottom of 
the cellar and opening by means of 
suitable flues and fireplaces into every 
living room in the house. 



To Prevent Dampness in Chimneys. 
— Let the chimney start from the bot- 
tom of the cellar, or, if built at the 
side of the house, from the foundation 
wall, and rest on a flat stone laid in 
water cement. This will prevent the 
bricks from absorbing moisture. A 
chimney resting on a foundation in 
the upper part of the house may ac- 
cumulate water during a rain storm, 
which will . saturate the bricks and 
communicate dampness to adjacent 
walls. 

Chimneys — To Prevent Soot. — Mix 
salt freely with the mortar in which 
the bricks on the inside of a chimney 
are laid. This will cause them to at- 
tract moisture in damp weather, which 
will loosen the soot and cause it to 
fall. It wiU also prevent the chimney 
from becoming infested with chimney 
swallows. 

To Ventilate Chimneys. — An open 
fireplace communicating with the chim- 
ney is an ideal ventilator; or a chim- 
ney may be built double, having two 
columns side by side or one within 
the other, one being reserved for ven- 
tilation and communicating with each 
room through an opening in the ceiling. 

Or a double chimney may have one 
column within the other, the air space 
between the two being connected with 
the rooms by ventilators. 

Chimneys — To Prevent Smoke. — 
Build a long, narrow flue 4 or 5 inches 
deep and IS to 18 inches wide, thus 
having an opening of 60 to 90 square 
inches. Let the flue open into an air 
chamber in the chimney of twice its 
size, i. e., an area of 130 to 180 square 
inches or 11 to 16 inches square, but 
this may be reduced toward the top 
of the chimney if desired. Carry the 
chimney as high above the roof as 
good taste will permit, and let the 
flue approach the chimney at an angle, 
or, if possible, by a number of turns. 
Usually the more crooked the flue the 
better the draught. A straight fun- 
nel does not usually draw well. 

To Cure a Smoky Chimney. — First 
note the cause. Either too much air 
is admitted below, or the draught is 
insufficient, or the wind blows down 



88 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



into the chimney from above. Hence, 
according to circumstances, contract 
the draught by narrowing the entrance 
to the grate or fireplace, or increase 
the height or crookedness of the flue 
and shaft, or place on the top of the 
chimney a wind shield or turn cap, 
which will revolve with the wind in 
such a way as to prevent the gusts 
from blowing down the chimney. 

The draught is caused by the fact 
that hot air rises and tends to create 
a vacuum, which by suction draws 
cold air after it. Hence, anything 
that chills the column of air in the 
chimney tends to check the draught. 
Therefore avoid admitting, across the 
top of the fire in a grate or fireplace, 
enough cold air to cool the flue. The 
fire should be located in such relation 
to the flue that the rising current of 
hot air will have the right of way and 
tend to fill the flue, to the exclusion 
of the cold air of the room; thus the 
latter will be sucked up through the 
fire itself, assisting the combustion 
and strengthening the draught. 

To Kindle Fires without Smoke. — 
To start a draught without smoke, on 
kindling a fire in an open grate when 
the air in the chimney is cold and the 
first flame is feeble, use a sufficient 
quantity of very combustible sub- 
stances, as kindlings, to create flames. 
These will heat the air in the chimney 
before cold or solid fuel is added, 
which burns less perfectly. 

Or reduce the opening to the grate 
or fireplace by means of a blower or 
light screen lined with asbestos and 
placed across the opening so as to 
admit air only in the required quan- 
tity and beneath the grate. 

To Prevent Smoke. — A hot fire will 
consume its own smoke. Hence, to 
prevent the formation of smoke, heat 
a hot bed of coals and add fresh fuel 
in such limited quantity as not to 
lower the heat of the fire below the 
smoke-consuming point. Push the 
coals back and put on fresh fuel so 
that the smoke will pass over the bed 
of live coals, where it will be con- 
sumed. 

Or adjust a wire screen having 



forty or more wires to the inch, to 
prevent the escape of smoke. 

To Glean Chimneys. — Prepare a bed 
of hot coals in the stove, throw open 
the draughts and dampers, and throw 
on the coals some pieces of old zinc, 
as the zinc from an old washboard. 
This will clean out all soot from the 
chimney. 

Or the chimney may be swept if the 
shaft is straight by attaching a heavy 
stone or other weight to the butt of 
a small pine or hemlock sapling and 
fastening a rope to its upper part. 
The weight will carry the sapling 
down the chimney, and when it is 
dragged back the extending branches 
will sweep clean the soot. Care must 
be taken to use a rope sufficiently 
strong and a sapling not too large, so 
as to prevent the rope from parting 
or the brush from lodging in the shaft. 

To Stop Leaks In Chimneys. — Make 
a cement of coal tar and sand, and 
apply as may be convenient within or 
without. 

To Put Out Fires in Chimneys. — 
Throw sulphur on the fire so that the 
fumes wiU ascend the flue. Take pre- 
cautions not to breathe the fumes of 
burning sulphur. 

Or ascend to the roof and throw 
salt down the chimney. Or shut off 
the draught from below if possible by 
covering the opening to the fireplace 
with wet blankets or otherwise. Or, if 
the fire is not too strong, put a tight 
cover over the top of the diimney. 

FIBE EXTINGTTISHEBit AND FIBE 
ESCAPES 

To Extinguish Fires. — ^The objects 
to be attained in putting out fire are 
principally two: to cut off its source 
of supply in the oxygen of the air, 
and to lower the temperature of the 
burning substances below the point of 
combustion. Drenching the burning 
parts with water accomplishes both 
objects. It prevents the access of air 
and chills the burning parts. 

A heavy woolen cloth thrown over 
or wrapped about burning objects 
smothers the fire by shutting off the 



HEATING, LIGHTING, AND REFRIGERATION 



89 



air, and if wet, also assists by lower- 
ing the temperature. 

Chemical Are extinguishers produce 
noninfiammable gas, as carbon dioxide, 
which flows over the burning parts the 
same as water, temporarily shutting 
off the supply of air; hence the fol- 
lowing suggestions for extinguishing 
fires; 

Close the doors and windows to pre- 
vent draughts. Seize the burning ob- 
jects if small and movable, as lamps, 
curtains, and the like, and throw them 
out of the window, or wrap them in 
rugs or woolen table covers or bed 
covers. 

Or, if solid, heavy objects are on 
fire, seize a woolen blanket or other 
heavy woolen article, and if possible 
beat out the flames. If a small quan- 
tity of water is at hand, dip the 
woolen cloth into it and beat the fire 
with that. A single pail of water will 
go further if soaked up in a blanket 
than if dashed directly on the flames. 

Or, if plenty of water is at hand, 
dip a mop in it and beat the flames, 
or dash it on the fire in small quanti- 
ties from a dipper, directing it in- 
telligently to cover as much space as 
possible. 

To Put Out Burning Garments.^- 
If it person's clothing takes fire, he 
should be rolled up in a woolen rug, 
overcoat, table cover, or blanket to 
smother the fire. 

Or, if alone, he should roU himself 
up in one of these articles as quickly 
as possible; roll over and over on the 
floor or bed; or tear up the carpet 
and roll up in that. 

To Extinguish Fire with Chemicals. 
— To make a chemical fire extinguish- 
er, prepare a mixture of substances 
that will produce carbonic-acid gas in 
the presence of water, and arrange so 
that a stream of mingled gas and 
water will be thrown upon the flames 
by the expansive power of the gas. 
This is the celebrated patent of Will- 
iam A. Graham of Lexington, Va., 
that was contested during nearly fifty 
years in the United States courts. It 
is the principle of most chemical fire 
extinguishers now upon the market. 



The substances most commonly 
mixed to produce carbonic-acid gas 
are common soda and sulphuric acid, 
or oil of vitriol. Numerous practical 
devices have been patented for stor- 
ing these two, or other substances, in 
a suitable receptacle side by side, but 




" The Celebrated Patent of Graham." 

so arranged that they will not mingle 
until wanted. Then, by turning the 
receptacle upside down, or turning 
a stopcock, the acid is precipitated 
into a solution of bicarbonate of soda 
in water and the water is thereby 
charged with carbonic-acid gas, which, 
by its expansive power, ejects the 
stream of mingled gas and water 
through a, flexible rubber tube and a 
nozzle. 

One device consists of a tank or jar 
containing a strong solution of bicar- 
bonate of soda or common baking 
soda in water in which is immersed a 



90 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



tightly stoppered bottle containing oil 
of vitriol. The stopper of the bottle 
may be pulled out by means of a wire 
running through the cover of the tank, 
thus allowing the acid to mingle with 
the soda solution and produce car- 
bonic-acid gas. To imitate this device, 
take an old milk can or a five-gallon 
oil can and have a tinsmith fit it with 
a screw top and a stopcock fitted with 
a flexible rubber tube and a nozzle. 
Plain rubber tubing or flexible gas 
pipe is suitable for this purpose. The 
longer, the better. Fasten to the re- 
movable screw top by means of wire 
a glass bottle containing sulphuric 
acid and having a glass stopper. Fas- 
ten another wire about the neck of 
this stopper, let it protrude through 
the cover, and end in a ring. by means 
of which the stopper may be with- 
drawn. But care must be taken to use 
wires strong enough so that, should 
the stopper stick, the bottle may be 
broken off if need be without remov- 
ing the screw top of the can. When 
required, carry the extinguisher to the 
vicinity of the fire, pull out the stop- 
per, and shake the can to mix the oil, 
and soda solution. Turn the stop- 
cock and direct the resulting stream 
of water charged with carbonic-acid 
gas upon the flame. 

Or an ordinary pair of pliers or 
nippers used to handle wire may be 
set in the screw top of the can to hold 
the neck of the bottle of acid between 
their teeth. Then by closing the han- 
dle of the nippers the neck of the vial 
may be broken, allowing the acid to 
drop into the soda solution. This 
should be a little below the mouth of 
the can, so that the pliers themselves 
will not be immersed. They may be 
protected from rust by coating with 
rust-proof varnish. 

Or get a cylinder or pipe of tin, 
zinc, or other suitable material, and 
by means of a perforated partition 
near one end divide into two com- 
partments, one much larger than the 
other. Fit the opposite end with a 
stopcock, a flexible tube, and a nozzle. 
The larger compartment contains the 
solution of bicarbonate of soda in 



water; the smaller contains sulphuric 
acid in the form of a dry powder or 
crystals too coarse to pass through 
the perforations in the partition. This 
cylinder when not in use must, of 
course, be kept upright so that the 
soda solution will not come in contact 
vrith the acid; when required for use 
it must be inverted, the soda solution 
will then fall through the perforations 
upon the dry acid, and the mixture 
will produce carbonic-acid gas. 

Or the partition may be operated 
by means of a plunger which will 
knock it out of the way so that the 
dry soda will fall into the soda solu- 
tion. Any tinsmith or person of me- 
chanical ingenuity can construct at a 
vei-y nominal cost either of these de- 
vices and charge it with the same ma- 
terials as are used in the most expen- 
sive fire extinguisher upon the market. 
But take care to use a strong recep- 
tacle or to open the stopcock so as to 
give the mixture a vent by means of 
a suitable tube and nozzle as soon as 
the acid and the soda solution are 
brought into combination. This will 
prevent an explosion. Take care also 
to combine the materials in the right 
proportion. 

The proportions in which sulphuric 
acid and bicarbonate of soda unite to 
form carbonic-acid gas are S parts of 
sulphuric acid and 6 parts of bicar- 
bonate of soda (which is ordinary 
baking soda), by weight. Commercial 
bicarbonate of soda requires 13 times 
its weight of water to fully dissolve 
it. Hence a sufficiently large recep- 
tacle would require 6 pounds of bak- 
ing soda dissolved in 78 pounds of 
water and S pounds of sulphuric acid 
so arranged as to be poured into the 
soda solution when required. 

To fill a smaller tank in the same 
proportions, place the tank on the 
scales and note its weight. Now fill 
about two thirds or more with water. 
Note the total weight and subtract 
the weight of the tank. Divide this 
amount expressed in pounds by 13, 
and the result will be the number of 
pounds of soda required. The weight 
of acid required will be five sixths the 



HEATING, LIGHTING, AND REFRIGERATION 91 



\veight of the soda. Dissolve the 
soda in the water and place the siJ- 
phuric acid in a glass bottle so ar- 
ranged that when required for use 
the bottle may be turned over by a 
crank or otherwise and the acid 
spilled into the charge of soda water. 
Carbonic-acid gas will be generated 
at once under strong enough pressure 
to force the whole contents with con- 
siderable power through a nozzle di- 
rected against the fire. 

Or dissolve copperas or ferrous 
sulphate, 5 parts; ammonium' sul- 
phate, 20 parts, in water, 125 parts. 

Or dissolve in 75 parts water, cal- 
cium chloride, 20 parts; salt, 5 parts. 

The two last may be kept conveni- 
ently at hand for use with a hand 
pump. 

Hand Fire Extinguisher. — Another 
device consists of a mixture of suit- 
able substances combined in a glass 
vessel, which must be thrown upon the 
fire with sufficient force to break the 
glass. To make hand grenades or fire 
extinguishers of this sort take pint or 
quart fruit jars or any large bottles 
,and charge them with a mixture of 
equal parts of sugar of lead, alum, 
and common salt, dissolved in water. 
Keep these tightly corked in various 
parts of the house. To extinguish a 
fire throw one or more of these bot- 
tles into or just above the burning 
parts, so that the liquid will fall upon 
the wood or flames. 

Or charge these bottles with a mix- 
ture made of 2 pounds of common 
salt, 1 pound of muriate of ammonia, 
and 3 quarts of water. Dissolve, bot- 
tle, cork, and keep at hand in various 
parts of the house for emergency. 
Throw the bottles into the fire with 
force enough to break them. 

Or dissolve pearlash, soda, wood 
ashes, or common salt in the water 
which is being dashed upon the flames 
from pails or pitchers, or in which 
are soaked cloths to beat out the 
flames. 

Fire Extinguisher Hand Grenades. 
— Fill round bottles of thin blue glass 
with a mixture of equal parts of com- 
mon borax and sal ammoniac or cal- 



cium chloride. Add, just enough 
water to dissolve these substances, 
thus making strong saturated solu- 
tions. 

Fire Drills. — Boys should be en- 
couraged to prepare, under proper 
supervision, one or more of these fire 
extinguishers, and practice with them 
in putting out fires made out of doors 
for this purpose. A few experiments 
will insure that the directions have 
been understood, and will give valu- 
able practice as a sort of fire drill in 
advance of the emergency, as there is 
always danger of fire, whether from 
lightning or other cause, in isolated 
farmhouses and other buildings, not 
within reach, as in cities, of a fire de- 
partment. A conflagration may not 
only destroy the results of the labor 
of a lifetime, but also lead to loss of 
life from the flames or from conse- 
quent exposure in severe weather. 
Hence the importance of such prepa- 
ration can hardly be overestimated, 
especially when it can be done at very 
little expense. Moreover, such experi- 
ments have an important educational 
influence. 

To Extinguish Kerosene Fire. — Do 
not throw water on the flames of 
burning kerosene, gasoline, benzine, 
naphtha, or other petroleum products. 
The water wiU spread the flames and 
not put them out. Instead use milk, 
which forms an emulsion with the oil 
and extinguishes it. 

Fire Escapes. — ^You may remember 
Mark Twain's story of the " poor 
white " in Arkansas whose roof leaked 
so badly that the bed in which he 
slept was wet by every storm. When 
asked why he did not mend the roof, 
he replied that he could not do so when 
it rained without getting wet, and 
when the weather was fair it was not 
necessary. 

That is the attitude of many per- 
sons in regard to fire escapes. Suit- 
able provision for escape from attics, 
chambers, and other upper rooms is 
rarely thought of, except in the actual 
moment of danger, when stairways 
may be choked with smoke and flames. 
Many persons have escaped from up- 



92 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



per -windows of cottages and other 
low dwellings by knotting sheets and 
other bed covers together to form a 
strong rope, fastening one end to the 
bedpost, and sliding down this to the 
ground. This plan should be talked 
over in the family circle so as to be 




"Suitable Provisions for Escape. 



clearly miderstood by children and 
others in case of emergency. 

Or, if the rooms are too high from 
the ground to admit of this mode of 
escape, fasten a strong iron hook to 
the window casing, and have at hand 
a knotted rope long enough to reach 
to the ground. 

Or, if this is not to be had, the bed 
may be thrown out of the window to 
assist in breaking the shock, and the 
person may make a rope of the bed 
covers and slide down as far as pos- 
sible before dropping on the bed. A 
skylight should be cut in the ^oof of 
every dwelling and a permanent lad- 
der fixed to give access to this, and 
also from thence to the edge of the 
roof and to the ground. This will 
admit of escape if the staircase should 
take fire and fall. 



To Escape from Fires. — As the 
heated air, smoke, and noxious gases 
produced by combustion tend to rise, 
the purest air is next the floor. Hence, 
in escaping from fires, creep or crawl 
with the face near the floor. If time 
admits, a handkerchief or other thin 
cloth dipped in water and held over 
the nostrils will to some extent pre- 
vent drawing smoke into the lungs. 
Bystanders may assist in the escape 
of persons who are obliged to jump by 
holding a horse blanket or other large, 
stroilg cloth or canvas to receive 
them. The larger the cloth, the more 
persons holding it, and the higher it 
is held from the ground, the better. 

FISEPEOOFING AHD WATEE- 
PBOOFING 

To Prevent Fires. — The following 
substances are recommended for fire- 
proofing cloth and other materials: 
Alum, borax, vitriol, copperas, sul- 
phate of ammonia, soluble glass, tung- 
state of soda, and phosphate of am- 
monia; also various combinations and 
preparations of these. 

To Fireproof Cloth. — Mix equal 
quantities of alum, borax, and vitriol, 
or copperas ; dissolve with boiling wa- 
ter or a thin size made by melting an 
ounce of glue or gum arable in a 
gallon of water. Use no more water 
than is necessary to dissolve perfectly. 
Dilute the mixture to liquid form and 
soak the fabric in this. This prepara- 
tion is for articles to be used about 
stoves and flames, as holders, fire 
screens, and the like. 

To Fireproof Garments. — Mix tung- 
state of soda with boiled starch, or 
dissolve alum in water, or both. The 
tungstate of soda does not interfere 
with the ironing and is the best sub- 
stance to fireproof children's garments, 
lace curtains, and other light fabrics 
which are in danger of taking fire. 

To Fireproof Fabrics. — ^Dissolve 12 
ounces of borax and 9 ounces of sul- 
phate of magnesia in 5 pounds of 
boiling water. In this immerse the 
fabric when cool. 

Or dip the fabric in soluble gLass, 



HEATING, LIGHTING, AND REFEIGEEATION 



diluted with boiling water to 25° B. 
Hang to drip dry without wringing. 
While still damp, Immerse in a solu- 
tion of 1 pound of sulphate of alu- 
mina and 1 pound of sulphate of 
copper in 10 pounds of water. Dry 
without wringing in the open air. 

To Pireproof Canvas. — To fireproof 
canvas awnings or other coarse mate- 
rials, make a hot solution of 3 parts 
of alum and 1 part of copperais. Im- 
merse the articles three times, letting 
them drip dry between each immer- 
sion. Finally let dry and by means 
of a brush apply a solution of cop- 
peras mixed with pipe clay to the 
consistency of paint. This is a cele- 
brated German recipe. 

To rireproof Wood. — ^To fireproof 
wood impregnate it with alum, borax, 
or copperas, or a mixture of these. 

Or mix 2J pounds sulphate of zinc, 
1 pound of potash, 2 pounds of alum, 
and 1 pound of manganic oxide with 
lukewarm water in an iron kettle. Stir 
and add slowly 1 pound of sulphuric 
acid, 60 per cent pure. Dissolve 
the same proportions by weight for 
larger quantities. To apply, build up 
the pieces of wood corncob fashion, 
and wrap them at their points of junc- 
ture with sufficient wire to keep them 
at least an inch apart. This method ad- 
mits of immersing the greatest quan- 
tity of wood in the smallest bulk of 
liquid. Place the wood thus prepared 
in an old iron sink or tank and pour 
the liquid over it. Allow it to soak 
three or four hours, afterwards to 
drip dry, and season under shade in 
the open air. 

To Waterproof Cloth. — Substances 
recommended for waterproofing cloth 
are alum, acetate of lead (sugar of 
lead), linseed oil, and solutions of 
India rubber, isinglass, and wax in 
turpentine and other solvents, or mix- 
tures of the above in varying propor- 
tions. India rubber and other close 
waterproof fabrics are impervious to 
air as well as moisture ; hence they are 
hot, close, and imcomfortable, besides 
being unhealthful. Ordinary fabrics, 
as wool, linen, or cotton, duck, canvas, 
and the like, may be made waterproof 



by immersing in any of the above mix- 
tures without affecting their porous 
qualities. 

The following methods are recom- 
mended: Dissolve in a wash boiler 1 
ounce of yellow soap in 4 gallons of 
water and bring it to a boil. Allow 
the liquid to cool and when cold im- 
merse the fabric for twenty-four 
hours. Remove without wringing, and 
let it drip till partially dry. While 
still moist immerse it in a solution of 
i pound of alum and J pound of 
sugar of lead in 3 gallons of water. 
Dissolve these substances separately 
each in IJ gallons of water, stir vig- 
orously, and mix the two solutions. 
Soak the fabric in this for three or 
four hours, and hang it up to drip 
dry. When nearly dry it may be 
dipped again if desired. 

Or, for delicate fabrics, allow the 
mixture to settle, pour off the clear 
liquid from the sediment, and immerse 
in this. Fabrics thus treated are par- 
tially fireproof as well as waterproof. 

Or dissolve one pound of alum in 
a gallon of boiling water. Allow the 
liquid to cool and soak the fabric in 
it, but this is not equal to the mixture 
of alum and sugar of lead. 

Or put 5 pounds of sulphate of alu- 
mina in 1§ gallons of water; in a 
separate receptacle dissolve 3 pounds 
of oleic acid and IJ quarts of alcohol. 
Stir vigorously until dissolved. Now 
add the sulphate of alumina in a thin 
stream, mix and allow it to settle for 
twenty-four hours. Pour off the clear 
liquid, which may be discarded. Dry 
the residue with heat, and pulverize. 
Make a solution of this substance at 
the rate of 1 pound to 10 gallons of 
water to waterproof any silk, linen, 
or woolen fabric. Immerse the cloth 
or garment until it is thoroughly sat- 
urated, and afterwards allow it to 
drip dry. 

Or mix 4 ounces of isinglass, 4 
ounces of alum, and 2 ounces of yel- 
low soap, and dissolve in hot water to 
form an emulsion about the consist- 
ency of milk. Apply with a stiff 
brush to the wrong side of the fabric, 
rubbing thoroughly. Remove the ex- 



94 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 




a. Incandescent gas or gasoline gas at 81 per 1,000 ft. costs ic. per hour. Equals breath of 
3 persons; b. Acetylene gas costs |c. per hour. Espials 2 or t persons; c. Kerosene lamp / 
costs %c. Equals 7 or 8 persons; d. Open, flame gas costs |c. Equals 6 persons; e. Electric 
bulb costs He. Consumes no oxygen ; f. Candles cost 6ic. Each candle equals 12 persons. 



cess by sponging with water, or with 
a brush dipped in water, and rub 
smooth with a dry brush. 

Or dissolve pure India rubber and 
turpentine to a thin solution, and ap- 
ply with a brush. Afterwards apply 
a coating of sugar of lead dissolved 
in water. 

To Waterproof and Color Black. — 
Raise to a boil 4 quarts of linseed oil 
and stir in 1 ounce of burnt umber, 
1 ounce of acetate of lead, and 15 
ounces of lampblack. Dry and apply 
a second coat of the same solution, 
leaving out the sugar of lead. AUow 
this to dry and rub it down with a 
stiff bristle brush. Apply a third 
coat if desired. 

Or raise to a boil 4 quarts of lin- 
seed oU. Add 3 ounces of burnt um- 
ber, 3 ounces of sugar of lead, IJ 
ounces of sulphate of zinc, 2 ounces 
of Prussian blue, and IJ ounces of 
verdigris. Stir these into the oU and 
add 10 ounces of lampblack, stirring 
vigorously. Apply with a brush as in 
painting. Two or three coats of 
either of these mixtures should give 
a hard, durable waterproof surface 
of a black color and having a high 
gloss. 

To Waterproof Canvas Tents or 
Awnings. — Mix 8 pounds of white 
lead with one fourth by bulk spirits 
of turpentine. Stir in 1 ounce of su- 
gar of lead and 1 ounce of white 
vitriol. Dilute with boiled linseed oil 
to the consistency of paint. 

First boil the fabric in suds and 



rinse clean. Or scrub with soap and 
water and a stiff brush, afterwards 
applying water with a brush to remove 
all traces of soap. Apply the water- 
proofing with a painter's brush and 
stretch tightly while drjring. 

ABTIFICIAL ILLUMINATION 

Use of Systems of Illumination. — 
Artificial light is the third most im- 
portant of the necessities of civiliza- 
tion, taking rank after the items of 
clothing and shelter. A comparative 
statement of the annual value of illu- 
mination in the United States shows 
the following results: Acetylene (esti- 
mated), about $11,000,000; illumina- 
ting gas, $60,000,000; kerosene, $133,- 
000,000; electricity, $150,000,000; or 
total of $360,000,000, being about $4 
for every man, woman, and child in 
the United States. Probably 10 per 
cent of the light thus generated is 
wasted through misuse and ignorance, 
which would amount to forty cents 
per capita for the entire population 
of the country, or a total of $36,000,- 
000. Including all items pertaining 
to the lighting industry, it is probable 
that the grand total of expenditure 
would reach annually $500,000,000. 

Cost of Lighting Systems. — An av- 
erage period for the burning of arti- 
ficial light per twenty-four houts is 
perhaps from 6 to 10 p.m., or about 
four hours. A careful comparison of 
the cost of different systems of light- 
ing shows that each twenty-four can- 



HEATING, LIGHTING, AND REFRIGERATION 95 



die power of light pl-oduced from gas 
at $1 a thousand with a Welsbach 
burner, or from gasoline gas with a 
Welsbach burner, would be § cent for 
four hours, or about $3.46 a ysar; 
the- same candle power produced from 
acetylene would be 1^ for four hours, 
or $6.86 a year; from kerosene, 2g 
cents a day, or $8.76 a year. From 
gas at $1 per thousand without a 
Welsbach burner, 3 cents a day, or 
$10.96 a year; from incandescent elec- 
tric lamps, 5 cents a day, or $18.25 a 
year. But of course allowance must 
be made for varying prices and other 
local conditions. 

Effect of Aitlficial Light on Health. 
— It is not commonly known that most 
ordinary lights vitiate the atmosphere 
of living rooms to a greater extent 
than does the breathing of several per- 
sons. The incandescent electric light 
has a great advantage in this respect, 
as it is inclosed in a vacuum, and so 
consumes no oxygen and gives off very 
•little heat. The next least injurious 
form of lighting is the Welsbach burn- 
er with any iUimiinating gas, which 
consumes about the same amount of 
air as three persons. The ordinary 
gas jet without the Welsbach burner 
vitiates the air about as rapidly as the 
breathing of five persons; the common 
oil lamp, about the same as that of 
eight persons; and the ordinary tal- 
low candle is equal to the breath of 
twelve persons in the amount of at- 
mospheric oxygen it consumes. 

COAL GAS, GASOLIITE GAS, AND 
ACETYLENE 

Gas. — Gas for illuminating purposes 
was invented by William Murdoch in 
1792 at Redrutch, Cornwall, England. 
It was first used in the United States 
in 1806 by David Melville, of Newport, 
R. I. It was introduced in Boston 
in 1822, and in New York the year 
following. Gas is now used for heat- 
ing and cooking as well as for illu- 
minating purposes by upward of half 
the population of the United States. 
As its convenience amd economy be- 
come better known, the number of 



towns and villages to introduce gas 
will no doubt steadily increase. 

Coal gas is made by distilling bitu- 
minous coal with heat in a retort, con- 
densing and separating it from the 
water, vapor of tar, and other solid 
substances, and purifying the result- 
ing product to remove the compounds 
of sulphur and carbonic-acid gas. A 
by-product of this process is coke, 
about one third of which is required 
for heating the retorts; the rest is 
sold. Other by-products are ammonia 
water and coal tar. 

Illuminating gas consists of nearly 
equal parts of hydrogen (which burns 
W'tJi a blue flame, giving heat but no 
light), marsh gas, and other hydro- 
carbons (which burn with a luminous 
flame, but deposit soot if not fully 
consumed), and small quantities of 
carbonic oxide, and nitrogen, which 
are impurities and diminish the illu- 
minating power of the gas. 

Gas, after being purified, is usually 
stored in a cylindrical tank with a 
conical top made of iron plates float- 
ing in a cistern of water. This is so 
arranged to exert a uniform pres- 
sure on the gas equal to that of a 
column of water 6 inches high. The 
pressure serves to distribute the gas 
in the mains. These are usually made 
of cast iron from 24 inches down to 
3 inches in diameter and laid about 3 
feet under ground. The mains are 
connected with the buildings of con- 
sumers by service pipes, which should 
be below the frost line. Otherwise 
they may be closed by hoarfrost 
caused by the freezing of the watery 
vapor contained in the gas. The gas 
is measured by means of a house meter 
before being distributed to all parts 
of the building. 

Gas Meters. — ^The gas meter is not 
constructed like a clock, as the dial 
seems to suggest; hence, contrary to 
common belief, a. gas meter m good 
order cannot run either too fast or 
too slow. The meter is an engine in 
which the gas is the motive power. 
Unless the gas actually passes through 
the meter, the latter does not move. 
The dials mechanically and actually 



96 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



record the number of revolutions in 
cubic feet. The popular notions that 
gas meters are often inaccurate, and 
that an increased pressure or the 
practice of turning on the gas with 
full force when first lighted may malte 
the meter spin faster and record 
against the consumer, are erroneous. 
Of course the meter records all gas 
which passes, including that which is 
wasted as well as that which is used. 
Hence gas jets should be regulated so 
as to prevent " blowing " or the pass- 
ing of unconsumed gas. This regula- 
tion neutralizes the effect of any in- 
crease in the pressure in the gas mains. 
Contrary to common belief, most in- 
juries to a meter work against the 
company. Any apertures caused by 
use in the interior of the meter may 
allow the gas to get through without 
being recorded. Not infrequently the 
valves of a meter become fixed so as 
to let gas through without being reg- 
istered. Hence meters are tested at 
intervals by inspectors, who pass a 
certain number of cubic feet through 
them and note whether or not the dials 
make proper record. 

Amount of Gas Consumed. — Learn 
to read the gas meter and thus note 
what amount of gas is being con- 
sumed. The ordinary flat-flame burner 
should consume 5 or 6 feet of gas an 
hour. If badly adjusted or of faulty 
construction, it may consume 10 to 
IS cubic feet an hour. A Welsbach 
burner uses only about 3 feet an hour. 
A medium-sized two-oven range with 
all burners lighted consumes about 60 
feet an hour. A gas cylinder stove 
about 24 feet an hour. At least once 
a month make a test by reading the 
gas meter in the morning, noting care- 
fully the time each burner is lighted, 
and again reading the gas meter at 
night. If the quantity consumed is 
greatly in excess of the above figures 
it indicates that the burners are poor- 
ly adjusted. In that case notify the 
gas company, whose duty it is to regu- 
late the burners, and to keep them in 
order. Gas is the most economical of 
fuels if used with intelligence and 
care. 



To Burn Gas. — There are a right 
way and a wrong way to burn gas. 
In other words the illumination ob- 
tained from the gas burned depends 




j'A* trp ^FT. tip: 

"A Right Way and a Wrong Way." 

upon perfect combustion at the burner 
tip. And this combustion cannot take 
place unless the tip itself is in good 
condition. 

The picture on the left shows a, 5- 
foot tip ; the shape of the flame is f uU 
and regular, giving the fullest illu- 
minating power of the gas consumed. 
On the other hand, the picture on the 
right shows a 3-foot tip burning 5 feet 
of gas per hour and giving poor light; 
the flame is irregular and the com- 
bustion imperfect, due to the use of 
a burner tip not designed to burn 
over 3 cubic feet. 

It is obvious, then, that it is highly 
important to see that the burners and 
tips are intelligently selected and that 
they are kept in good condition, if 
gas is to be used economically, and 
the full illuminating power of the gas 
consumed obtained. 

To Read the Gas Meter. — ^The fig- 
ures on the index at the right hand 
denote even hundreds. When the hand 
completes the entire circle it denotes 




.10 000 1000 riooTiACM 

" The Figures on the Index." 

ten hundred, and is registered by the 
hand in the center circle pointing to 
1; each figure in the center circle de- 
notes a thousand, this entire circle 



HEATING, LIGHTING, AND REFRIGERATION 97 



being ten thousand, which is registered 
at 1 on the index of the left-hand 
circle by the hand, each figure there 
denoting ten thousand. 

The quantity of gas which passes 
through the meter is ascertained by 
reading from the index at the time 
the amount is required to be known, 
and deducting therefrom the quantity 
shown by the index at a previous ob- 
servation. 

If the whole is registered by 
the hands on the three circles 
above, it indicates 49,900 

Amount at previous observa- 
tion, as shown by the dotted 
lines 42,500 

Amount which passed through 
since last taken off 7,400 

The register at all times shows the 
quantity that has passed through since 
the meter was first set. Deducting 
from this the amount that has been 
paid for (without any regard to the 
time when), the remainder shows what 
is impaid. 

Or, in different words, the dial on 
the right hand (marked 1,000) indi- 
cates 100 feet from one figure to the 
next. I The middle dial (marked 10,- 
000) indicates 1,000 feet from one 
figure to the next. The dial on the 
left (marked 100,000) indicates 10,000 
feet from one figure to the next. 

If the hand on the right-hand dial 
is between the figures 2 and 4, the 
lesser of the two numbers is read, the 
index reading 200 feet. If the hand 
on the middle dial is between 1 and 0, 
this dial reads 3,000 feet. If the hand 
on the left-hand dial is between and 
6, the reading of this dial is 60,000 
feet. The complete index as indicated 
on the three dials reads 63,200 feet. 

At f 1 per thousand feet, the hand 
on the right-hand dial passing from 
the zero point to the figure 1, would 
indicate that ten cents' worth of gas 
has been registered on the meter. This 
hand would have to make one entire 
revolution of this dial and reach the 
zero point again to register $1 worth 



of gas, and the hand on the middle 
dial will have moved just one point, 
or from the ^ero point to the figure 
1, indicating the 1,000 feet of gas 
which has been registered in hundreds 
on the right-hand dial. 

The small (2-foot) dial which is on 
the face of the consumer's meter is 
not read except for testing purposes, 
and registers only two feet of gas for 
each revolution of the hand. 

Shades and Chimneys. — ^The use of 
shades and chimneys causes a very 
considerable loss of light on account 
of the conversion of the light from 
flame into heat. The loss from a clear 
glass is 10 per cent or 11 per cent, 
from ground glass about 30 per cent, 
opal glass over 50 per cent, orange- 
colored glass about 36 per cent, pur- 
ple, ruby, or green, over 80 per cent, 
or. transparent porcelain over 95 per 
cent. Hence care should be used 
that the kind of shade or chimney 
employed does not interpose to cut 
off the direct rays of light upon the 
objects to be illimiinated. The Ar- 
gand chimneys are of two kinds: the 
straight and the bulb varieties. Of 
these the straight variety is to be 
preferred. 

Gas Burners. — Gas burners are of 
three kinds: the common bat-wing 
burner with a slit, the fish-tail with 
two oblique holes facing each other, 
and the Argand, a circular burner 
with a ring of small holes, a glass 
chimney, and an interior supply of air. 
In addition to these are the Welsbach 
burner having a fiber cap, and the 
Bunsen burner, used for heating in 
chemical laboratories. 

Burners are constructed in vary^ 
ing sizes to burn 1, 2, 3, 4, or 5 
cubic feet of gas per hour, accord- 
ing to the size of the fiame when 
turned on full. Under equal condi- 
tions the larger burners are more 
economical than the smaller. That is, 
a burner which consumes 4 feet of gas 
gives twice as much light as two 
burners that consume each 3 feet. 
Hence there is great economy in the 
use of a few large burners over many 
small ones. 



98 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



Pressure of Gas. — Gas is frequently 
supplied at a much higher pressure 
than is necessary to give the best re- 
sults. Hence if the jet is turned on 
full some of the gas will escape, caus- 
ing the well-known "blowing" noise. 



"A 




\\\\i /^\ 1//// 




Burners in Varying Sizes." 



To prevent this, always on lighting 
the jet turn the stopcock backward 
as much as possible without percep- 
tibly decreasing the light. This prac- 
tice alone, if adhered to, will make a 
very important difference in the con- 
sumption of gas. 

Or the gas may be partially turned 
off at the meter, or a check can be 
introduced into the burner. One of 
the best checks is to screw a burner 




a. " One of the 
Best Checks." 



b. "Different Types 
of Burners." 



intended to consume 5 or 6 feet of gas 
an hour over a ■ 3- or 4- foot burner. 
A low pressure with a burner which 
secures a supply of air just enough 



to prevent smoking gives a maximum 
amount of light. 

A Welsbach burner having a cap or 
mantle constructed on the well-known 
principle of the miner's safety lamp 
consumes from 3 to 34 feet of gas an 
hour and gives about 60 candle power, 
as against the 16 candle power of the 
ordinary electric light bulb. In a 
well-regulated Welsbach burner there 
should be no smoke. The blackening 
of the mantle is caused by the im- 
proper adjustment of the air shutter 
and consequent clogging of the wire 
gauze or air holes in the burner which 
produces an improper mixture of gas 
and air. 

To prevent the heat of the Welsbach 
light from discoloring the ceiling, put 
a mica dome over it. This is made to 
fit into or clamp to the top of the 
lamp chimney. Or suspend a glass 
smoke bell from the ceiling. If Wels- 
bach lights, after being used for a 
month or two, become dim, probably 
the wire gauze of the burner is rusted 
or dirty. It should be removed and 
cleaned before a new mantle is ad- 
j usted. 

To Change a Uantle on a Welsbach 
Xamp. — To change a cap mantle take 
it up gently and put it down on a 
steady base, say, on the mantelpiece, 
handling it by the base or cap. To 
change a loop mantle, disengage the 
supporting rod by setting back the 
set screw. Lift the mantle off care- 
fully by raising the supporting wire. 
Slip a stiff wire or knitting needle 
through the loop in the top of the 
mantle at right angles with it. Hang 
the mantle in a pitcher having the 
ends of the knitting needle rest on 
each side. Be careful not to jar or 
knock the mantle in raising or re- 
placing it. The best of these mantles 
are exceedingly delicate and will fall 
to pieces at a touch. 

Gas Troubles. — If the gas goes out, 
send for the gas fitter or notify the 
ofSce of the company. But as this 
may occur at night when help cannot 
be obtained it is well to know how to 
meet the emergency. The cause may 
be a deficiency of water or an excess 



HEATING, LIGHTING, AND REFRIGERATION 



99 



of water, freezing of the meter, freez- 
ing of the service pipes, or the con- 
densation of water in the house pipes. 
Close the cocks of all the burners 
except one. When approaching the 
meter with a candle or open-flame 
lamp, keep the light at a distance to 
prevent an explosion. Turn off the 
gas at the main cock between the 
street surface pipe and the meter. 
Unscrew the plug of the waste-water 
system to let out any excess of water. 

If the meter is frozen, cover it with 
a flannel cloth and pour boiling water 
over it. Afterwards wrap it in dry 
flannel or protect it by felt, straw, tan 
bark, sawdust, or sand. If the surface 
pipe is frozen outside the house, it 
will be necessary to uncover it and 
apply heat. 

If water has condensed in the pipes 
it will cause the gas to jump up and 
down for some days before it finally 
puts the gas out. Hence, when it 
jumps or flickers, the gas company 
should be notified. 

Or, on emergency, remove a burner 
and blow violently into the pipe. This 
wiU sometimes force the water below 
the hollow. If the trouble persists, 
the location of the meter should be 
changed to a lower one, and the pipes 
inclined so that all condensed water 
will trickle back to the meter. 

Gas Arc Lamps. — These lamps are 
intended to give a maximum light with 
a minimum consumption of gas. They 
are composed of four burners of the 
incandescent burner or Welsbach type, 
and give a wonderfully high illumina- 
ting power, especially adapted for use 
in rooms of large area like stores, 
assembly halls, and churches having 
lofty ceilings. They are made for 
both outside and interior lighting, and 
are especially valuable for commercial 
purposes. 

Gas Leaks. — If a strong odor of 
gas is detected, probably a stopcock 
has been left open and the gas thus 
escapes at full force. Do not go near 
such an open gas jet with a light, as 
gas mingled with air is a highly explo- 
sive mixture. To enter a room filled 
with gas, first open adjacent doors 



and windows to create a draught, 
throw the doors wide open, rush across 
the I'oora, and throw the windows wide 
open, meantime holding the breath. 
The air is purest next the floor; hence 
if in danger of being overcome lie face 
down on the floor, where the air is 
likely to be comparatively pure. Turn 
off the open cock as soon as possible. 
If the odor of gas is slight, it may 
come from a small leak in the pipe or 
about a burner. To find such a leak 
light a match and carry the flame 
along the pipe from the tip of the jet 
as far as the pipe is exposed. Wlien 
the leak is found, the gas will take 
fire. 

Or dissolve half a bar of hard yel- 
low soap in IJ pints of water, and 
apply the mixture to the gas pipe 
with a brush. If there is gas escaping 
through holes it will form bubbles 
which can be seen and the leak de- 
tected without danger of explosion. 

To mend a small leak in a gas pipe 
cover the place temporarily with yel- 
low soap; stop it permanently with a 
cement made of white lead and boiled 
linseed oil. 

Acetylene Gas. — The use of acetylene 
gas for lighting purposes marks an 
era in artificial illumination. Acety- 
lene is produced by the contact of 
calcium carbide (which has somewhat 
the appearance of gunpowder) and 
water. The result is the evolution of 
a gas which burns with a pure white 
light giving the nearest approach to 
sunlight, and has an illuminating pow- 
er more than twelve times as great as 
that of ordinary gas. The introduc- 
tion of acetylene is comparatively re- 
cent, and some prejudice against it 
has been aroused by defects in the 
style of generators first placed upon 
the market. The experimental period 
is now well-nigh passed, and the Na- 
tional Board of Fire Underwriters has 
approved a large number of genera- 
tors. If a proper apparatus is select- 
ed, acetylene may be regarded to be 
as safe as any other illuminant. The 
various generators on the markets are 
of two types: one, in which the gas is 
produced by placing the calcium car- 



100 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



bide in a suitable receptacle and al- 
lowing water to gradually fall upon 
it; the other, in which a receptacle is 
filled with a relatively large quantity 
of water and the calcium carbide is al- 
lowed to drop into the water in small 




" Generators of Two Types." 

quantities. The latter type of gen- 
erator is the safer and is consequently 
to be preferred. The brilliancy of 
acetylene flame is so great that a small 
one the size of a copper cent is suffi- 
cient to light an ordinary living room. 
Hence the air is vitiated much less 
than by most other forms of illumina- 
tion. Recent experiments at Cornell 
University show that the light fur- 
nished by acetylene has, to a consid- 




" The Power of SunlightinPromoting Growth."* 

erable degree, the power that sunlight 
has in promoting the growth of vege- 
tation. It is much less trying to the 
eyes than electricity or ordinary gas. 



* Both lilies had the same treatment ex- 
cept that the larger was exposed at night to 
the light of acetylene gas. 



and is likely to become increasingly 
popular. 

Gasoline Gas. — Perhaps the cheap- 
est method of illumination in localities 
that are not supplied vrith illuminating 
gas or that are furnished with the gas 
at high prices, is the use of gasoline 
gas. A tank of gasoline is located 
outside of the dwelling house and 
buried six or eight feet under ground. 
To produce the gas it is only neces- 
sary to pass a current of air across 
the surface of the gasoline. A very 
simple contrivance for this purpose is 
a blower, which may be operated by 
windmill, water power, or by means 
of weights and pulleys installed in the 
cellar. Of course the necessary pip- 
ing must be provided to carry the 
gasoline gas to various parts of the 
dwelling as required, and also an au- 
tomatic air mixer. When the gasoline 
tank is ojitside the premises and un- 
derground, there is no possibility of 
explosion. The entire apparatus is 
very simple, and while the first cost 
has to be taken into account, the cost 
of operation is very low, probably not 
more than one half that of an equal 
number of kerosene lamps. 

Welsbach Burner. — The incandes- 
cent principle of light, as applied in 
the well-known Welsbach burner, con- 
sists in heating a gauze mantle, im- 
pregnated with certain rare earths, to 
a white heat by means of a mixture 
of gas and air. The result is a flame 
five or six times as strong in propor- 
tion to the gas consumed as that pro- 
duced by an ordinary open gas burner. 
The air in the room is also vitiated 
much less, and less heat is given off. 
The Welsbach burner may be used 
with any form of gas, but is especially 
useful in connection with gasoline gas, 
as it admits of a proper mixture of 
air with the gas, and does away with 
the necessity of providing an auto- 
matic air mixer. 

KEROSENE OIL 

Kerosene lamps. — The use of kero- 
sene in rural districts and small vil- 
lages is practically universal. For- 



HEATING, LIGHTING, AND REFRIGERATION 101 



merly, the oil of the sperm whale was 
the principal source of illumination in 
those localities, and before the dis- 
covery of petroleum the problem of 
lighting for country districts was a 
very serious one. Petroleum had been 
known for many years before the first 
well was driven in northwestern Penn- 
sylvania, in 1837, but from that time 
to this the use of kerosene and other 
petroleum products has increased rap- 
idly. 

Tc Choose Oil Lamps. — Practically 
all the standard makes of kerosene 
lamps are now safe and reliable, but 
the best results are those made on the 
principle of the German student lamp, 
having a reservoir of oil placed at a 
distance from the wick. If the wick 
protrudes directly from the reservoir 
of oil below it, the light decreases as 
the oU is consumed. 

Petroleum and Its Products. — Pe- 
troleum is a liquid containing bitumen, 
which occurs in a natural state in 
various parts of the world. It is also 
called rock oil and mineral oil. It 
ranges from a light straw color to 
black, depending upon the locality in 
which it is found. It sometimes occurs 
in springs, but is more often obtained 
by drilling wells. 

Petroleum is now conveyed to mar- 
kets and refineries through pipe lines, 
and the various oils derived from it 
are handled in tank cars, in steam- 
ships, and in barrels. Among the 
products of petroleum are gasoline, 
naphtha, benzine, kerosene, lubricating 
oils, parafSne, vaseline, and other sub- 
stances too numerous to mention. 

These are obtained by distilling 
petroleum in an iron stiU having a 
condenser of wrought-iron pipes im- 
mersed in water. When heat is ap- 
plied to the still the lightest or most 
volatile constituents are first driven 
off in the form of a gas. The next 
heaviest constituents condense at or- 
dinary temperatures as crude naphtha. 
These are afterwards distilled into 
gasoline and ABC naphthas. They 
have a specific gravity of 65° to S8° B. 

When the stream of oil has a grav- 
ity of 59° B. it is turned from the 



naphtha tank to the kerosene tank 
until it reaches a gravity of about 
38° B., or until the color becomes yel- 
low. The stream is then turned into 
the paraffine tank until it ceases to 
flow at a gravity of about 35° B. 
The residuum contained in the still 
consists of a thick, heavy tar. 

This is, of course, only an outline 
of the process, which is varied in a 
great many ways to produce a large 
nmnber of by-products, as vaseline 
and numerous others used in medicine 
and in the arts. The following is a 
fair average composition of petro- 
leum: Gasoline, 14 per cent; naphthas, 
14 per cent; kerosene, 65 per cent; 
lubricating oU, 17J per cent ; parafSne, 
2 per cent; waste, 10 per cent. 

Or, by another process, the same oil 
could be made to produce: Naphthas, 
20 per cent; kerosene, 66 per cent; 
waste, 14 per cent. 

Kerosene, or common illuminating 
oil, is the most important product of 
petroleum. Its appearance and prin- 
cipal properties are well known. 
Its density should be from 43° to 
45° B. 

Gasoline is another Important petro- 
leum product. It is used largely in 
the carburetors of automobile and 
other gasoline engines, for purposes of 
illumination, and also for heating and 
cooking in stoves especially designed 
for the purpose. 

The uses of crude petroleum and its 
various derivatives in the arts are very 
numerous, and its influence upon civ- 
ilization has been hardly less than that 
of the steam engine and of electricity. 
There seems to be no reason to fear 
any shortage of the production of 
petroleum for an indefinite time to 
come. 

To Test Illuminating Oil. — At ordi- 
nary temperatures kerosene oil should 
extinguish a match as readily as wa- 
ter. It should not give off any inflam- 
mable gas below .110° F., nor take fire 
below 125° F. Kerosene is usually 
freed from naphtha by spraying. If 
kerosene contains even a very small 
quantity of naphtha it is highly in- 
flammable and explosive'; therefore it 



102 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



is required by law to be tested before 
it is sold. 

There are two kinds of tests; the 
" flash test," which determines the low- 
est temperature at which oil gives off 
an inflammable vapor, and the " burn- 
ing test," which determines the lowest 
temperature at which the oil takes 
fire. This test is made commercially 
by means of an apparatus having a 
cup to hold the oil, in which the bulb 
of a thermometer is immersed, and 
which is surrounded by a vessel of 
water heated by an alcohol lamp. 
The temperature is slowly increased 
at the rate of about 3 per cent a 
minute. The oil is stirred at inter- 
vals, a flame applied, and the point 
noted at which an inflammable vapor 
is given off, and also at which the oil 
takes fire. 

A rough test for ordinary purposes 
may be made by filling a cup with 
water, inserting an ordinary ther- 
mometer, and bringing the tempera- 
ture to 110° over a slow fire. Pour a 
tablespoonful of oil on the water, and 
apply a lighted match. If the oil 
takes fire it is unsafe and is liable to 
explode. Dealers who sell oil that 
will not stand this test at 110° are 
liable to prosecution by law. They 
should be compelled to take back the 
oil and refund the price paid for it. 

To Purify Kerosene. — The adultera- 
tion of oil by means of a heavier oil 
than standard kerosene causes a dim- 
ness of the flame and charring of the 
wick. The best kerosene oil is clear and 
nearly colorless, like water. To puri- 
fy kerosene oil, add to 100 pounds of 
oil 1 pound of chloride of lime, mixed 
with 13 pounds of water to the con- 
sistency of cream. This must be done 
in a lead-lined vat, as iron or copper 
will be corroded by the process. Thor- 
oughly mix these materials, let stand 
over night, and add 1 or 3 pounds of 
sulphuric acid diluted with 30 to SO 
parts of water and boil with gentle 
heat, stirring constantly until a sam- 
ple tested on a glass plate is perfectly 
clear. Let the mixture settle, when 
the oil will rise to the top and can be 
drawn off, leaving the impurities in 



the form of sediment mixed with the 
acidulated water. 

The following four paragraphs are 
adapted from Macbeth's "Index." 

The Care of lamps. — ^Lamps smell 
and give poor light: first, because they 
are not kept clean; or secondly, the 
wick is poor or clogged by having 
been used too long; or thirdly, the 
chimney is wrong. 

Trim, clean, and fill daily, and wipe 
the whole lamp. 

Trim by rubbing the char off the 
wick; this leaves it even. Don't cut 
it; you can't cut it even. 

Keep the holes in the floor of the 
burner clear for draught. 

Don't fill quite full; the oil expands 
with heat and runs over. 

Boil the burner a few minutes once 
a month in sal soda or lye water. 

Empty the fount occasionally for 
sediment. 

Don't open the lamp when hot; 
there is explosive vapor in it. 

Light it with the wick turned low 
and turn up gradually, or you will 
get it too high and make smoke. 

Move with care a lamp that has 
been burning long enough to get hot; 
or, better still, don't move it. 

Use the American Fletcher or Hyatt 
wick; and renew it every month or 
two, no matter how fresh it looks; it 
gets clogged and doesn't feed freely. 

Use oil of not less than 110° flash 
for safety; the higher the flash the 
safer the oil. 

lamp Chimneys. — The object of 
lamp chimneys is to supply the flame 
with exactly the amount of air it 
needs for perfect combustion, no more 
and no less, vrith an even draught on 
both sides of the flame; they must, of 
course, be clear and transparent. This 
calls for fit in the fuU meaning of 
the word and for clear glass that will 
stay clear. Thus there is something 
to know about chimneys beyond the 
mere size of the bottom. The ordinary 
notion of fit is a chimney that will 
stay on the lamp and not fall off. 
That is part of the fit. The rest is 
such a shape as to make the right 
draught for that particular lamp. It 



HEATING, LIGHTING, AND REFRIGERATION 103 



Includes the seat, bulb, shaft, propor- 
tion, sizes in all parts, and length. 
Good chimneys that fit well give more 
light than common ones. This is due 
to perfection of shape and proportion 
and the right balance of draughts. 

To Select Chimneys. — Use the chim- 
ney recommended by the maker of the 
lamp, or write to a manufacturer of 
lamp chimneys for his catalogue and 
order according to directions. 

If compelled to buy from stock, try 
one chimney after another, turning up 
the wick in each case till you get the 
most light it will give. When you 
have the right one, you can turn the 
wick higher and get more light than 
you can from others, in some cases 
perhaps twice as much. It pays to 
select chimneys with care for two rea- 
sons: one is, the right chimney gives 
more light ; the other is, it lasts longer. 
Chimneys are usually made in three 
grades, of which it always pays to buy 
the best. Comparing bad chimneys 
with good ones, the breakage is ten to 
one, the light is half, and the price is 
half. 

The Breaking of Chimneys. — Chim- 
neys break from misuse. A wrong 
number may break or melt; if the 
burner is foul, the glass may break; 
a gust of cold air on a hot chimney 
may break it; a gas chimney may 
break or melt from a hole in the man- 
tle; the hole lets a jet of flame di- 
rectly against the chimney, the explo- 
sion of lighting breaks the mantle, 
and the broken mantle breaks the 
chimney. 

Whenever the chimney is touched by 
the flame it melts or breaks. Its shape 
prevents touching, unless through some 
misuse. In central-draught lamps the 
flame is between two draughts — the 
central and the outer one. When the 
burner is foul, this outer draught is 
partly stopped, and the flame gets 
pushed too near or against the chim- 
ney, and breaks or melts it. 

Chimneys cannot be made to resist 
misuse or accidents. 

To Prevent Explosions of Lamps. — 
One common cause of explosions is 
the upsetting of a lamp; hence select 



a lamp which has a broad, solid base 
rather than one that appears top 
heavy. 

Never fill a lamp while it is burn- 
ing. To avoid this, buy lamps that 
have no opening but the one made for 
the wick. While it is a convenience 
to have a lamp with a special opening 
for filling, it is not .safe, as children 
and others will sometimes undertake 
to fill it while burning, which may 
lead to an explosion. Also, when 
lamps have a special opening for fill- 
ing, the wick is likely to be neglected 
until it becomes charred and the burn- 
er gets clogged up and dirty. In 
this condition the lamp is very apt 
to explode, because the charred por- 
tion of a wick takes' fire, the oil that 
rims over burns, and heat is generated 
so low down in the burner that any 
volatile gases thrown off by the oil 
may become ignited. The best oil 
commences to evaporate at about 110° 
and ignites at 125°, and this vapor, 
like that which rises from gasoline, 
benzine, or naphtha, is highly inflam- 
mable and explosive. Hence do not 
let a lamp stand with little oil in it, 
or light one which has stood partly 
empty for a long time. 

The best lamps have an extinguisher 
to put out the flame, but if this is 
lacking, do not blow out the lamp 
without first turning down the wick, 
especially if the lamp has been burned 
for some time and the burner and ad- 
jacent parts are hot. The fact that 
you may have done this safely many 
times does not prove that under cer- 
tain conditions a volatile gas from the 
oil may not meet the flame and cause 
explosion. 

Always turn the lamp low when 
carrying it about, as movement from 
place to place in sudden draughts may 
bring the flame in contact with the 
gases that form when oil is burning, 
and that are more or less disturbed 
by the jar of walking. 

Chemistry of Lamps. — The chem- 
istry of burning kerosene is very sim- 
ple. The oil is composed of two 
inflammable substances, a gas (hydro- 
gen), which burns with a blue flame 



104 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



and a very intense heat, and a solid 
(carbon), whicli consists of very mi- 
nute particles in chemical combination 
with the hydrogen. When the lamp is 
lit the flame is raised to a temperature 
that admits of chemical union with 
the oxygen of the air. The hydrogen 
first burns, and produces sufficient heat 
to allow the oxygen to ignite with the 
carbon. When for any reason there 
is an excess of oil as when a lamp is 
turned too high, or when the heat of 
the flame is reduced as when the lamp 
is turned too low, the heat of the 
burning hydrogen is not sufficient to 
ignite all of the solid carbon, some of 
which escapes in the form of a finely 
divided black solid, and we say that 
the lamp smokes. This solid carbon 
is what we call soot, or lampblack. 
Commercial lampblack is thus ob- 
tained. 

When we breathe the air, a very 
similar process takes place in our 
lungs, the oxygen of the air uniting 
with the waste substances in the blood 
and purifying them by a kind of com- 
bustion. Hence every flame in a room 
robs the air of a certain amount of 
oxygen that is essential to human 
life. 

This process, both in the lamp and 
in the lungs, produces a compound of 
oxygen and carbon called carbon di- 
oxygen, or carbonic-acid gas. Human 
beings would inunediately suffocate in 
a room quite filled with carbonic-acid 
gas, as it contains no free oxygen in 
the form available for human use. 
When imbmned particles of carbon 
are thrown off in the form of smoke 
or soot, the finest of them are sus- 
pended in the air and find their way 
into the limgs. Nothing offers so much 
resistance to chemical and vital forces 
as pure carbon; hence these particles 
are difficult to dislodge and exceed- 
ingly harmful. 

Meantime the lamp in burning gen- 
erates a certain amount of heat. This 
extends from the burner to the adja- 
cent parts of the lamp, and in many 
cases makes the receptacle containing 
the oil quite hot. The temperature of 
the oil is thus raised, and at a certain 



point it gives off a volatUe inflamma- 
ble gas similar to gasoline, benzine, or 
naphtha, which, if the lamp should 
leak, may come in contact with the 
open flame and cause an explosion. 

Or, under certain circumstances, it 
may be exploded by a sharp jar. 

If these facts and principles are un- 
derstood and proper cautions are ob- 
served, there need be no danger in 
the use of kerosene. The fact that 
kerosene is used in practically every 
household and that explosions are very 
rare proves this, but it does not prove 
that proper precautions must not be 
observed. Modern lamps are so con- 
structed as to reduce to a minimum 
the dangers due to ignorance and 
carelessness, but the fact that explo- 
sions do take place occasionally shows 
that care and intelligence are still 
necessary. 

Cantions to Observe. — Buy the best 
lamps and the best oil. Trim the 
wicks and fill the lamps daily. Ad- 
just the wick neither too high nor 
too low. 

After turning up the wick to the 
right height, set the screw by a slight 
turn backward, which will prevent the 
wick from crawling up as it expands 
with the increase of heat. Try this, 
and the sense of touch will tell you 
what is necessary. Do not leave lamps 
or carry them when turned too high 
or too low. Adj ust the flame midway 
and set back the screw. 

Night Lamps. — Do not use ordinary 
lamps as night lamps by turning them 
low. Instead obtain a small night 
lamp that will admit of burning a 
tiny flame turned on full. Or turn 
up the ordinary lamp until the flame 
is clear and bright and then shade it 
from the eyes. The flame of an ordi- 
nary lamp turned low throws off a 
large amount of imconsumed carbon 
and volatile gases, which impregnate 
the atmosphere and are taken into the 
lungs with many evil consequences, 
that are usually attributed to other 
sources. 

Student Lamps. — These are pro- 
vided with an oil tank at some little 
distance from the burner and at a 



HEATING, LIGHTING, AND HEFRIGERATiON lo^ 



lower level. Great care must be ob- 
served to keep a student lamp exactly 
level. If the oil tank is raised above 
the level of the burner, the latter will 
be overflowed with dangerous results. 
When filling the lamp, care must be 
taken not to leave air bubbles in the 
oil, otherwise the pipe conveying the 
oil to the burner will be clogged and 
the light will be made dim. 

Lamps on Fire. — ^When a lamp over- 
flows or for any reason gets on fire, 
seize it and throw it out of the win- 
dow. A moment's delay may result in 
an explosion that will scatter burning 
kerosene all about and lead to a con- 
flagration. Or seize as quickly as pos- 
sible a heavy woolen rug, table cover, 
or couch cover, and wrap it tightly 
around the lamp. This prevents the 
oxygen of the air from reaching the 
flame, and it is quickly smothered. If 
a person's clothing takes fire from 
kerosene flames, do not throw water 
upon him or aUow him to run about. 
Wrap him quickly in a large rug or 
other woolen cloth, which wUl extin- 
guish the flames. If, by the explosion 
of a lamp or otherwise, burning oil is 
scattered about a room, do not throw 
water upon it, as it will only spread 
it. Throw on milk or any dry, heavy 
substance, as flour, corn meal, sand, 
or earth. 

Kerosene for Lighting Fires. — 
Kerosene should not be used for light- 
ing fires, but it is so convenient and 
efBcient that persons will always be 
found who prefer to take their chances 
of an explosion. The only caution 
that must be observed is not to pour 
oil into the stove from a can, else it 
will become ignited and the flame fol- 
lowing the stream will find its way 
into the can and explode the oil. 
Even if the fire is supposed to be out, 
there may be coals or sparks in the 
ashes sufficient to ignite the fine 
stream of kerosene. If oU is to be 
used it should be poured into an old 
cup, saucer, or other open vessel and 
dashed at once on the kindling wood. 
The worst possible result to follow if 
oil is thus ignited will be a puff of 
flame, that wUl do no harm if it does 



not catch light garments or other in- 
flammable substances. 

Some persons soak corncobs in kero- 
sene and use these as fire lighters. 
When this is done the vessel in which 
they are kept should be provided with 
a tight cover and kept in a cool place. 

Poot Warmer. — When driving or 
sleighriding in winter, fill a sirup can 
having a screw top with hot water. 
This will keep warm for a, long time. 
It may be used in place of a hot- 
water bottle. 

Or make a square box of pine, 6 or 
8 inches deep and large enough to 
just fit about the base of an ordinary 
lantern. Leave this open at the top, 
and have the bottom broad enough so 
that the box will not readily tip over. 
Bore a few holes near the bottom of 
the box to admit the air, and when 
driving in winter set a lantern in the 
box and let it stand on the carriage 
or sleigh bottom under the robes at 
the driver's feet. If these suggestions 
are observed the lantern will burn 
with a clear, steady flame, without 
smoking, will not tip over or soil robes 
or garments, and will keep the driver 
comfortable in freezing weather. 

To Improve Kerosene Oil. — Put a. 
teaspoonful of common salt in an or- 
dinary hand lamp, and a tablespoon- 
ful in a large lamp with a B burner. 
This gives a more brilliant light, and 
tends to prevent smoking, and hence 
to keep the wicks and chimneys clean. 

Chinese Lanterns. — When using 
these lanterns for holiday occasions, 
put a few handfuls of sand in the 
bottom of the paper lantern about the 
candle. This keeps them from sway- 
ing, and also tends to prevent them 
from taking fire. 

Vest-pocket Light. — Put a piece of 
phosphorus in a 1- or 2-ounce glass 
vial and fill with olive oil. Cork 
tightly. When the oil is heated by 
the warmth of the body or otherwise, 
the phosphorus will emit light enough 
to read the time on the dial of a 
watch in the darkest night. Should 
the vial become broken do not touch 
the phosphorus with the fingers, as it 
will eat the flesh and produce an ulcer. 



106 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVEEIES 



Take it up between two sticks or 
otherwise and drop it into water. To 
give good results it must be kept from 
the air. 

Bonfires. — To inake brilliant bonfires 
and signal fires, mix 8 pounds of salt- 
peter, 4 pounds of flower of sulphur, 
1 pound of antimony, and J pound of 
camphor. Powder these ingredients, 
mix and tamp them into an iron 
socket. When ignited, they will burn 
for some time with great brilliancy. 

light in Sark Well or Cistern.^ 
Light may be reflected down a well or 
other deep, dark recess by means of 
a looking-glass. 

CANDLES AND CANDLE UAEING 

Candles. — A candle is often referred 
to as a symbol of the past, yet the 
candle industry of the United States 




"Especially for Dinner Tables." 

is greater at present than it has ever 
been in the past and is increasing rap- 
idly from year to year. Professor 
Thompson, a celebrated electrician, 
declares that if the electric light had 
existed for centuries and the candle 
was newly invented, it would be hailed 
as one of the greatest discoveries of 
the age, being entirely self-contained, 
cheap, and portable, and requiring no 
accessories in the way of chimneys or 



shades. Candles are much used for 
decorative purposes, especially for 
dinner tables, and they are also in 
demand for religious ceremonies in 
Catholic, Jewish, and other churches. 

How to Make Candles. — The well- 
nigh universal use of kerosene has 
supplanted the domestic art of candle 
making which in colonial times was 
practiced in every household. Of late, 
however, there is a growing tendency 
to revive the crafts of our forefathers, 
and to imitate the old English cus- 
toms from which they were derived. 
Antique candlesticks in various artis- 
tic forms are much in demand for or- 
nament as well as for utility. The 
pretty custom of placing lighted can- 
dles on lunch and dinner tables is 
much observed, and the use of bed- 
time candlesticks is quite common. 
For all these reasons, as also on ac- 
count of the usefulness of a bit of 
candle for the homelier purposes of 
the household, it is worth while to 
revive the art of candle making. These 
household arts have, moreover, a dis- 
tinct educational value. Time often 
hangs heavy on the hands of the boys 
and girls, especially on stormy days 
in the country, and there can be no 
harm in turning a quantity of mutton 
or beef suet and a little beeswax into 
a dozen or two candles, which will save 
kerosene and which would cost quite 
a little sum at the grocer's. 

Commercial candles are made from 
tallow and a substance known as stea- 
rin which is derived from tallow; from 
wax; from spermaceti; and from 
paraffine, which is a. petroleimi prod- 
uct. Wax candles are usually rolled. 
Tallow candles may be either dipped 
or molded. Candle molds consist of 
tubes arranged in frames of 6 or 13 
tubes, and fitted with a trough at the 
upper part of the frame through which 
the tallow may be poured into the 
tubes or molds. The wicks are ar- 
ranged along the axis of the tubes and 
tied to wires hung across the top of 
the frame. 

Dipped candles are made upon a 
different frame, consisting of two cir- 
cular wires separated by standards of 



HEATING, LIGHTING, AND REFRIGERATION 107 



a length corresponding to that desired 
for the candle. The wicks are strung 
from one circle to the other at dis- 
tances apart rather more than double 
the intended thickness of the candle. 
The frames are then immersed in 
melted tallow and removed to cool, 
and afterwards dipped agaui and 
again, until the proper thickness is 
secured. Wax candles are prepared by 
pouring melted wax upon the wicks 
until they acquire suitable thickness. 
Afterwards they are shaped by roll- 
ing between wet pieces of hard wood. 

Candle Wicks. — The first step in 
making candles is the preparation of 
the wicks. Candle wicking can be ob- 
tained from any dealer in dry goods 
in the form of cotton roping, which 
may be twisted or braided together, 
using as many strands to make the 
wick as the size of the candle requires. 

The greatest desideratum is a wick 
that will consume itself and do away 
with the necessity of snuffing. Many 
efforts have been made to produce the 
ideal wick. The wicking is commonly 
soaked in various inflammable sub- 
stances, or treated so as to cause the 
end of the wide to bend over when 
burning and protrude outside of the 
flame. This contact with the oxygen 
of the air creates a more perfect com- 
bustion than can take place within 
the flame. One method of causing the 
wick to bend is to braid into it one 
strand which is shorter than the others 
and is therefore stretched to greater 
tension. Another is to load the wick 
with metallic bismuth. This melts in 
the flame and forms a bead that causes 
the wick to bend. 'The following solu- 
tions for the preparation of wicks are 
recommended : 

Soak the wick in spirits of turpen- 
tine and afterwards dry thoroughly 
before using. Use a wick smaller than 
ordinary. Or dissolve in 3 quarts of 
water 2 ounces of borax, 1 ounce of 
chloride of lime, 1 ounce of chloride 
of ammonia, and 1 ounce of saltpeter. 
Filter through a cheese cloth. Soak 
the wicks in this solution. Or dissolve 
in 1 gallon of water i pound of lime 
and 3 ounces of saltpeter. In all 



these solutions immerse the wicks fif- 
teen or twenty minutes. Remove and 
hang in the sunshine to dry thor- 
oughly before using. 

Candles from Tallow. — Candles may 
be made in the proportion of 3 parts 
of mutton tallow to 1 part of beef 
tallow, but they are likely to be soft 
and often turn yellow, especially in 
summer time; hence the following 
methods are used to harden the tallow: 

Put the tallow over the fire, and 
when nearly melted stir in 1 pound of 
alum dissolved in hot waiter for each 
S pounds of tallow, until all is melted. 
Or melt together IJ pounds of mut- 
ton tallow, 8 ounces of beeswax, i 
ounce of camphor, and 4 ounces of 
alum. Either of these will be as hard 
and durable as wax, and if the wicks 
are properly prepared will burn with 
a clear and steady light. 

Tallow used for candles must be 
clear-grained fat, which may be puri- 
fied as recommended under " Soap 
Making," or by mixing tallow, bees- 
wax, and other ingredients, and melt- 
ing all together in a kettle with a 
weak potash or soda lye. Put the 
kettle on the range to boil in the 
morning while other work is being 
done, and let boil for two or three 
hours, stirring occasionally, and skim- 
ming off the impurities with a coarse 
strainer. Let stand over night, and 
when cold take off the cake of tallow 
and wax from the lye, scrape off the 
soft part next the lye with its impuri- 
ties, and boil up with a fresh kettle 
of lye. So continue two or three 
days, and the last day, instead of lye 
use for each 30 pounds of tallow wa- 
ter containing 1 pound of alum and 
1 pound of saltpeter. Remove the 
cake when cold and the tallow will be 
purified ready for use. 

Candles from Lard. — Put 10 pounds 
of lard on the fire, and before it 
is quite melted add 1 pound of salt- 
peter and 1 pound of alum dissolved 
in half a pint or a little more of 
boiling water. Boil until all the 
water has been evaporated. Skim 
off any impurities that rise to the 
surface. _Meantime, stir vigorously 



108 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



to prevent burning. As soon as the 
steam ceases to rise, pour off the tal- 
low and rinse the boiler. The tallow 
is now ready. 

Or mix 1 pound of lard with 7 
pounds of beeswax. Melt with gentle 
heat and add carefully 1 ounce of 
nitric acid, stirring vigorously. 

Stearin, or Stearic Acid. — This is 
the principal fatty acid contained in 
animal fats. Tallow and other fats 
contain also glycerin and various im- 
purities. To remove these, take 3 
ounces of slaked lime to IJ pounds of 
common tallow, and have ready 4 
ounces of sulphuric acid. Melt the 
tallow and stir in the lime, boiling 
over a slow fire until a lime soap is 
formed. Turn off the lime soap into 
another kettle, add the sulphuric acid, 
boil, and stir until the fat separates. 
The sulphuric acid will unite with the 
alum, forming sulphate of lime and 
water. When cool, remove the cake 
of fat; melt this with gentle heat, stir- 
ring vigorously to prevent burning, 
until any water it may contain is 
driven off. The resulting product is 
stearin, or stearic acid, a perfectly 
dry, inflammable substance, but with- 
out any greasy feel, and having a 
somewhat pearly luster. Stearin alone 
does not form good candles, as after 
melting it cools in the form of hard 
crystals; but mixed with one tenth its 
weight of wax it forms the finest 
grade of commercial candles. Stearin 
is also made by separating the glyce- 
rin from cocoanut oil or palm oil by 
a jet of dry steam. Stearin candles 
give better light and burn longer than 
any other kind. 

To Dip Candles. — First cut the 
wicks to the proper length, then dip 
them in melted tallow, roll them be- 
tween the hands to thoroughly incor- 
porate the tallow with the wick, pull 
them straight, and allow them to 
harden. Adjust the wicks on the 
dipping frame, which may be pur- 
chased or homemade of wire, being 
merely two rings of wire separated 
the proper distance by three or four 
stiff wire standards. Set the wicks a 
little more than twice the thickness 



of a candle from each other. Melt 
the tallow over a slow fire, but do 
not let it burn. Dip the frame in the 
melted tallow by means of a wooden 
handle. Remove it, touch the bot- 
toms of the candles gently upon a 
smooth board, and suspend the frame 
in a JittUght of cool air, if possible, 
to set and harden. When cold, im- 
merse a second time, and so continue 
until the candles are of the proper 
size. 

To Mold Candles. — Candle molds 
may be purchased made either of tin 
or pewter. Candles are molded up- 
side down, the tray or trough at the 
upper part of the mold corresponding 
to the bottom of the candle, and the 
lower part of the mold being shaped 
to mold the candle top and having a 
small aperture in the center to re- 
ceive the wick. Loop one end of the 
wick over a wire suspended across 
the top of the mold, thread the other 
end into a large darning needle, and 
drop it down through the aperture at 
the bottom of the mold. 

Or use a long piece of wire for this 
purpose. The wick may be knotted, 
where it comes out of the lower end 
of the mold, to keep it taut. Melted 
tallow, hot enough to be easily poured, 
is poured into the mold until it is 
filled, the wicks are then pulled tight, 
and the candles allowed to cool. When 
quite cold they may be removed by 
the loops in the wicking at the top of 
the mold. 

To Boll Candles. — Wax candles can- 
not be molded, as wax has a tendency 
to contract in cooling and also to 
adhere to the molds; hence the wicks 
are arranged on frames similar to dip- 
ping frames and suspended over a 
kettle of melted wax. The wax is 
then poured over the wicks by means 
of a ladle, so that what does not ad- 
here to them falls back into the kettle. 
This process is continued until the 
candles are of the proper size. They 
are then taken one by one and rolled 
to the proper shape between two pad- 
dles of hard wood previously soaked 
in water. 

Or while soft the melted wax may 



HEATING, LIGHTING, AND HEFRlGEftATlON 109 



be applied to the wicks with the hand, 
and the candles afterwards rolled, cut, 
and trimmed. 

To Imitate Wax Candles. — Melt 
together two parts of wax to one of 
tallow, and make into candles either 
by dipping or molding. These have 
the appearance of wax candles and 
are much more easily prepared. The 
tallow should be clear-grained fat, 
cleansed of all its impurities. 

To Bleach Candles. — Candles may 
be bleached by exposing them to dew, 
air, and sunshine. If wax candles 
become soiled, they may be cleansed 
by rubbing them with a piece of 
flannel cloth slightly dampened with 
alcohol. 

To prevent candles from dripping 
and sputtering, put them on ice for 
two or three hours before using, but 
do not aUow the wicks to touch the 
melting ice. Before lighting, turn the 
candle upside down and rub a pinch 
of salt into the wick between the 
thumb and forefinger. Shake off the 
excess of salt so that the grains will 
not fall on the candle. The result 
will be an even, clear burning. 

To Light a Candle. — Apply the 
match to the side of the wick, and not 
to the top. 

To Blow Out a Candle. — Hold the 
candle higher than the mouth and 
blow it out by an upward instead of 
a downward air current. This will 
prevent the wick from smoldering. 

To Carry Candles. — When carrying 
a lighted candle about the house use a 
short piece held in the middle of a 
tumbler. Let the candle drip for 
a moment into the bottom of the tum- 
bler, and fasten it by its own drip- 
pings. The glass will protect the 
candle from draughts. 

Candlesticks. — A supply of candle- 
sticks in all parts of the house will 
not only be of great convenience and 
utility but will give an effective touch 
of decoration to a home. A row of 
brass or bronze candlesticks of various 
sizes may be placed in the hall for 
bedroom use. Silver or glass may be 
used in the dining room, delft or 
china in the drawing-room, and can- 



dlestick sets with match box and 
snuffers on the bedside tables. 

Candlesticks are always acceptable 
bridal presents, and the fad or fashion 
of collecting antiques and preserving 
heirlooms of this sort commends itself 
on account of the many pleasant as- 
sociations connected with candlelight. 

Sushligrhts. — The old - fashioned 
rushlights may be made by stripping 
the skin from the rushes and dipping- 
the pith in melted tallow in the same 
manner that candles are dipped. These 
were formeWy used for many house- 
hold purposes. 

Electricity. — The first cost of in- 
stalling electricity is considerable. It 
is in most localities an expensive light 
and is somewhat hard upon the eyes, 
but notwithstanding these drawbacks 
it is perhaps the most convenient of 
all forms of lighting, and hence its 
use seems to be upon the increase. 

IITBITSTBIAL ALCOHOL 

Denatured alcohol may be dis- 
tilled from the various products of 
the farm, such as corn, potatoes, 
beets, sugar cane, and other starch 
and sugar-bearing grains or plants. 
It is simply the ordinary grain alco- 
hol of commerce made unfit for use 
as a beverage. Prior to January 1, 
190T, the tax of $3.07 on a gallon of 
94 per cent alcohol precluded its use 
as a fuel for lighting, heating, and 
cooking. The regulations issued by 
the U. S. Internal Revenue Depart- 
ment provide a formula for denatur- 
ing grain or ethyl alcohol, so that it 
may now be freely sold in drug, 
hardware, and general stores through- 
out the United States for industrial 
purposes. 

In Germany each year about 78,- 
000,000 gallons of alcohol are produced 
from potatoes alone — about 80 per 
cent of the entire alcohol production 
of the empire. The Germans are 
frugal and economical; their ap- 
proval of this wonderful fuel dem- 
onstrates its practical value for 
household uses. Special denatured 
alcohol is used in the manufacture of 



110 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



hundreds of articles, such as cel- 
luloid, imitation leather, jewelry, 
watches, lacquers, pastes, varnishes, 
shoe polish, bronze, transparent soap, 
etc. But its greatest consumption 
will ultimately come from its use in 
lamps, cooking and heating stoves, 
and other household' utilities. Appli- 
ances have been perfected for some 
time that give great satisfaction. 
Master minds, however, are working 
on this great problem, and improved 
devices are daily being placed on the 
market. 

Iiighting. — One of the most im- 
portant uses for denatured alcohol is 
found in the lighting field. Its supe- 
riority over kerosene and gasoline is 
self-evident. It gives a cool, clear, 
white light of unusual brilliancy, con- 
sumes but a very small percentage 
of oxygen, is safe, gives off no odor 
or soot, and necessitates but little 
care. The wick never burns nor does 
it require trimming. The cost to op- 
erate a household denatured alcohol 




Alcohol Lamps. 

lamp which, as certified by the elec- 
trical testing laboratories, yields 
45-1% candle power of light, and con- 
sumes 1 gallon of alcohol in 38i 
hours, would be only 1^ cents per 
hour if alcohol cost 50 cents per gal- 



lon. This price is a fair one through- 
out the United States, though it will 
doubtless be lowered as the consump- 
tion increases and new methods of 
manufacture are developed. 

Alcohol lamps are constructed on 
the Bunsen burner principal, through 
which the alcohol is vaporized, only 1 
part of alcohol to 20 parts of air 
being thus consumed. The incandes- 
cent mantle, used on alcohol lamps, 
transforms this light from the gas 
generated by the Bunsen burners 
into a beautiful white light not un- 
like daylight. Lamps are now of- 




Alcohol Camping Kit. 

fered for sale throughout this coun- 
try in various styles — student and ta- 
ble lamps, hand lamps, also inverted 
lights of as high as 300 candle power. 
These inverted lights are constructed 
to withstand wind, rain, and storm, 
and can be used for all outdoor as 
well as indoor purposes. 

Stoves. — Cooking stoves (one, two, 
and three burners) are now in satis- 
factory use. For summer cooking, in 
place of gas ranges or oil stoves, they 
present many advantages. There is 
absolutely no odor or smoke, the heati 
is concentrated at exactly the point 
desired, the flame is very hot, and it 
gives very little radiant heat; any- 
thing that can be cooked by boiling, 
steaming, stewing, simmering, and 
frying can be cooked on an alcohol 
stove with the ordinary utensils 
found in u kitchen. Roasting and 
broiling can be done by the aid of 
special utensils for the purpose. The 
small portable ovens used on gas 
stoves may also be used on alcohol 
stoves. Ovens for bread making and 
roasting are promised shortly — in 
fact, a complete alcohol range. One 
experiment shows that 1 gallon of al- 
cohol, costing 50 cents, was sufficient 
to cook 36 meals for two people dur- 



HEATING, LIGHTING, AND REFRIGERATION 111 



ing 13 consecutive days at a cost of 
less than 4 cents a day. The best re- 
sults in burning coal averaged 8 cents 
a day. The higher cost of coal is 
found in the waste of heat betvi^een 
meals when the stove is unused, yet 
burning coal. The low cost of alco- 
hol comes from the fact that the in- 
stant the cooking stops the cost stops. ' 

This great economy combined with 
its cleanliness, safety, ease of man- 
agement, and its complete control 
promise to make this the ideal do- 
mestic fuel. 

Heating. — Heating stoves are not 
so far advanced as other alcohol- 
consuming devices. They are in con- 
siderable use in the East, and have 
been used largely in Germany and 
France for years. The heaters are 
cleanly in that there is no dust or 
ashes. And being light and not at- 
tached to flue, pipe, or chimney, they 
can easily be moved from place to 
place. The flame is at all times non- 
smoking and odorless. Other advan- 
tages not so easily observed, but none 
the less real and important, are 
found in the increased healthfulness 
and purity of the air of a closed 
room in which alcohol is burned, 
compared to one in which kerosene 
or gasoline is being used. The nox- 
ious influence of carbonic-acid gas in 
closed rooms is well known. That 
carbonic monoxide always accom- 
panies this, and is many times more 
poisonous and more lasting in its evil 
effects, is not so well known. This 
gas results from the incomplete com- 
bustion of the carbonaceous materi- 
als, and the very fact that the alcohol 
flame is nonluminous shows that com- 
bustion is complete and that there is 
practically none of the dangerous 
carbon-monoxide gas formed. 

Other rtllities. — Self-heating flat- 
irons, chafing dishes, special marine 
lamps and stoves, curling Irons, port- 
able or nursery cooking stoves with 
nested utensils, and many other novel 
and practical utilities are now on the 
market. 

Power. — Alcohol as a motor fuel 
that is an explosive agent in an in- 



ternal combustion engine is a recent 
development. In France cabs weigh- 
ing 3,788 pounds were driven 70 miles 
in 3 hours and 4i4< minutes at as low 




Self-heating Flatiron and Stoves. 

a cost as 40 cents. The leading auto- 
mobile makers are now making ex- 
haustive experiments. 

Possibilities. — The future of this 
practically inexhaustible fuel is as- 
sured. The granges throughout the 
United States have taken it up and 
organized the famous National Com- 
mittee, " to promote the use of alco- 
hol in the industrial arts, and es- 
pecially to encourage its use for 
light, heat, and power, to the end 
that new markets for farm products 
shall be opened, modern improve- 
ments brought into the rural home, 
the toil of the farmer's wife lessened, 
and all the benefits of cheap alcohol 
difi^used among the people in the 
shortest time." The Federal Govern- 
ment has- established a model distill- 
ery in Washington. The agricultural 
colleges throughout the country will 
teach the manufacture of ^denatured 
alcohol, and tremendous development 
is promised by the Department of 
Agriculture, now taking an active in- 
terest in the subject, 

WATER SUPPLY 

Water should be brought into the 
house, and also to the barn whenever 
possible, by windmill or by a gravity 
system. Pipes should then be laid to 



112 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



remove the waste water from house 
and barn, and to dispose of it in such 
a way as to avoid creating breeding 
grounds for the bacteria that cause 
filth diseases. There are important 
reasons why water should be brought 
to the barn; but if it is not possible 
to bring it to both places, the house 
should have the preference. L. H. 
Baily says: "The first thing I would 
now do for the farm home is to put 
in sanitary water works for the care 
and comfort of the person. Nothing 
would so soon lift the home ideals." 

Every farmhouse should have good 
kitchen sinks, water closets, and a 
bathroom. Drinking water should be 
brought in by pipes. Such a water 
supply means additional comfort, bet- 
ter health, protection against fire, 
saving of labor, and a supply of water 
for garden and lawn. 

Various methods are in use, as 
pumps, gravity from high springs or 
creeks or tanks on the roof. If the 
source of supply is a spring, first find 
out two things: is the spring high 
enough above the house? Is the quan- 
tity of water sufficient? You can 
measure the overflow of the spring by 
paUfuls. The house alone for a fam- 
ily of ten will need about 600 gallons 
in twenty-four hours. To get this, 
the spring should flow fast enough to 
fill a 10-quart paU in five minutes. 
If the spring is high above the house 
and near at hand, |-inch pipe may be 
sufficient; but if the spring is not 
high, or if the pipe is long, inch pipe 
is safer and better. 

The spring should be dug out, 
walled up, and covered with wood, 
brick, stone, or concrete — to be pre- 
ferred in the order mentioned. The 
pipe may be either iron, lead, wood, 
or sewer pipe. Sewer pipe costs 
about six cents a running foot, and 
|-inch wrought-iron pipe about the 
same. 

If t'.ie pressure is high— especially 
at the lower end — ^it is safer to use 
iron. Wood or lead pipe is nowadays 
rarely used. 

A windmill and a tank, piped to 
convey water both to house and barn. 



is a good investment. The tank should 
hold a week's supply, or about 3,000 
gallons for the house, and twice as 
much for house and barn: say a tank 
10 feet across and 6 feet deep. The 
mill should be at least a 12-footer. 

If a gravity water supply or wind- 
mill cannot be had, water should cer- 
tainly be brought to the kitchen sink 
and also to the bathroom, if any, by 




Hot-water Circulation After E. T. WHson. 

means of a small hand force pump. 
The ste'ps saved and health gained 
make a convenient water supply a 
necessity rather than a luxury. 

Disposal of Waste Water. — If water 
is brought into the house, piping 
must be provided to carry the waste 
water so far away that it will not seep 
into the well, or otherwise become a 
menace to health. Many a house- 



HEATING, LIGHTING, AND .REFRIGERATION H3 



keeper steps to the kitchen door and 
empties the dish pan hy throwing the 
water as far as she can. Drainpipes 
from many farmhouses form pools a 
short distance from the house, whence 
dirty water is expected to leach into 
the soil or be taken up by the sun. 
These spots are natural breeding 
grounds for the germs of typhoid and 
other contagious filth diseases. Mos- 
quitoes also breed in these pools, and 
thence come into the house, bringing 
through their bites germs of disease, 
which find their way into the blood. 
Modern science has traced to such 
sources many deaths in rural neigh- 
borhoods that should be the most 
healthy in the world. 

These dangers may be prevented by 
carrying the drainpipes to any run- 
ning stream where the water is not 
afterwards used. 

Cesspool. — ^The next best device is 
a cesspool, about 6 feet across and 8 
or 10 feet deep, and at least 100 feet 
from any buildings. Wall this up 
with stones, but do not cement it. The 
liquids will leach away into the soil, 
and the solids can be cleaned out two 
or three times a year. Care must be 
taken to locate the cesspool far 
enough from the well, so that drain- 
age from it will not contaminate 
drinking water. 

A cesspool should not be dug in a 
heavy clay or a clay loam, through 
which liquids wiU not drain away. In 
such cases it is necessary to carry the 
drainage farther from the house — say 
200 or 300 feet — and allow it to flow 
over a considerable surface. This 
tract may be grass land, or, better, 
artificially prepared by covering it 
with sand. It should have an area 
of from 25 to 100 feet square for 
every ten persons in the family; and 
the sewage should be distributed by 
drains or furrows, so that it will come 
in contact with all parts of the sur- 
face, and not settle in a single pool. 

Sink Drain! — A temporary drain 
folr waste water from the kitchen sink 
may be made very cheap. Four-inch 
vitrified tile costs about seven cents 
a foot. A drain may be run about 



25 feet in the opposite direction from 
the well, and the waste conveyed to a 
tub or barrel, whence it may be run 
off to the garden by a small pipe or 
carried away in pails. If a barrel 
can be provided with two wheels, and 
a tongue like a cart, it can be easily 
drawn away from time to time and 
emptied. The expense of such a drain 
is nominal: twenty-five feet of vitri- 
fied tile, $1.75; sink, $1.25; pipe and 
trap, $1. Total, $4. 

Another method is to dig a trench 
75 to 100 feet long, 3 or 3 feet wide, 
and the same deep. Lay in the bot- 
tom of this trench 4- or 6-inch drain- 
tiles. Leave the joints open, and fill 
around the drain with field stone and 
pebbles as large as your fist. This 
should be 200 feet or more from 
buildings. The top is to be left open, 
and waste water discharged into it 
by pipes leading from the house. The 
drain will be filled to the top, but in 
a short time it will leach away into 
the soil. A pound or so of copperas 
dissolved in a pailful of hot water and 
poured into the drain will destroy all 
offensive odors. 

Water Pipes. — To prevent the 
freezing of water pipes where there is 
a regjilar water supply, always turn 
off the water from the house by turn- 
ing the stopcock leading to the street 
main. Open all faucets and allow 
pipes to drain thoroughly, also empty 
the kitchen boiler. If this is not done 
the boiler may collapse. To empty 
the boiler attach a garden or other 
hose to the top and let the water run 
into the sink. You should do this 
every spring and fall to clean the 
tank. 

To prevent freezing in pumps, lift 
the trap in the valve and allow the 
water to run back into the well. 

Kitchen sinks should not be put 
against the outer wall of a house. If 
this has been done and the sink can- 
not be changed, circular tubes of as- 
bestos can be purchased and fitted 
over the pipes, or the wall may be 
lined with asbestos. But on cold 
nights it is safer to turn the water 
Off. 



114 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVEKIES 



Trozen Water Pipes. — While the 
pipes are frozen care must be taken 
not to build a fire in furnace or range, 
as direct heat from the pipes will gen- 
erate steam and severe explosions may 
follow. At the very least pipes will 
burst and the plumbers' bills for re- 
pairs will be heavy. Pipes that are 
slightly stuck may be thawed by 
wrapping them round with flannel or 
other cloth and pouring on hot water. 
Plumbers use gasoline or kerosene gas 
in lamps which blow around the frozen 
pipe, and they move the lamp back 
and forth so as not to apply too much 
heat at any one spot. 

Drinking Water. — The source of 
supply of drinking water should be 
absolutely pure. And it is a good 
idea to have drinking water, especial- 
ly from wells and cisterns, tested 
chemically at least twice a year. 
Water from deep cisterns, from wells, 
and from the deepest portions of 
large ponds and reservoirs, is to be 
preferred to that from running 
streams. Water is often contaminat- 
ed by its proximity to stables, cess- 
pools, and open drains, through un- 
derground leaching in sandy or other 
porous soil. Bacteria of typhoid 
fever, cholera, and dysentery may be 
ta|ten into the system from impure 
drinking water. When there is any 
reason to suspect the water supply, 
especially if these diseases are preva- 
lent, all drinking water should be 
boiled. A little lemon juice will take 
away the flat taste of boiled water. 

Physicians frequently recommend 
drinking water in large quantities, 
say, a pint half an hour before each 
meal, and the same quantity before 
retiring at night. The effect of this 
is to increase the muscular activity of 
certain internal organs by distention, 
and to dissolve certain poisonous se- 
cretions, as uric acid, for instance, 
which causes rheumatism. This prac- 
tice is also a preventive in cases of 
threatened diabetes or kidney disease. 
It is probable that few persons drink 
as much water as is advisable from 
a hygienic standpoint. But, of course, 
the more water taken into the system 



the more Important it is that the 
source of supply should be pure. 

Approximately four fifths of the 
human body consists of liquids, of 
which over 60 per cent is water. This 
fact suggests the importance of sup- 
plying drinking water of the best 
quality. 

Wells. — In most localities it is not 
necessary to dig more than 20 or 30 
feet to strike running water. Water 
accumulates in wells from under- 
ground streams percolating through 
the soil. Soils often lie in layers, a 
layer of sandy soil sometimes occur- 
ring between two layers of clay or 
gravel in such a way as to convey 
contamination from cesspools, drains, 
and other decaying organic matter 
from long distances. More often, 
wells are contaminated by surface 
water washing into them. The best 
way to line a well is with large tiles 
or tile piping. A heavy tight-fitting 
stone laid over the mouth of the well 
will keep out small animals and pre- 
vent angleworms, dead leaves, and 
other organic matter from being car- 
ried into the well by surface leach- 
ing. 

Well Water usually contains min- 
eral impurities that percolate through 
the soil, and is often contaminated by 
angleworms, snakes, toads, and other 
small animals falling into the well. 
The skeletons of these animals are not 
infrequently found at the bottom of 
old wells when cleaning. Wells are 
especially liable to contamination 
through drains and sewers. 

Water from Bivers is less pure 
than good spring water. It usually 
contains mud and other organic mat- 
ter in suspension, and is often con- 
taminated by drains, stables, sewage, 
etc. 

Spring Water is usually pure and 
good for drinking water, but it often 
contains minerals in solution, and is 
tlien known as hard water. A spring 
intended to be a source of water sup- 
ply should be tested by chemical anal- 
ysis. 

Bain Water, when properly col- 
lected at a distance from large towns. 



HEATING, LIGHTING, AND EEFRIGERATION 115 



is pure and soft. In towns it is 
often contaminated by smoke and 
fumes in the atmosphere. Cistern 
water in towns and cities should be 
filtered and boiled for drinking pur- 
poses. 

Snow Water from clean snow, melt- 
ed, is the purest form of natural 
water. 

To Soften Water. — Boiling hard 
water from twenty to thirty minutes 
is the best way to soften it for drink- 
ing purposes. This also has the ef- 
fect of killing all germs of disease it 
may contain. Carbonic-acid gas pass- 
es off with the steam, and carbonate 
of lime is left as a sediment. A clean 
oyster shell put in the tea kettle will 
attract this and other sediments that 
are deposited from boiling water, and 
will thus prevent an unpleasant crust 
from gathering on the inside of the 
tea kettle. 

Or baking soda (bicarbonate of 
soda) in small quantities will soften 
hard water by removing the excess of 
lime. 

Or, for the laundry, hard water 
may be softened by the addition of a 
little borax. And this does not make 
water objectionable for cooking pur- 
poses. 

Or quicklime is also recommended. 
Dissolve i ounce in 10 quarts of 
water, and pour this solution into a 
barrel of hard water. The whole, will 
be softened. 

To Make Boiled Water More Pal- 
atable. — The flat taste of boiled water 
is objectionable to many. This may 
be obviated by pouring the water rap- 
idly from one pitcher to another, hold- 
ing the two pitchers some distance 
apart. This process aerates the water, 
renders it sparkling, and restores its 
natural flavor. A few drops of lemon 
juice contribute to this effect. 

To Keep Water Cool withcat.Ice. 
— In summer or in warm climates 
drinking water may be kept in un- 
glazed earthenware pitchers. Wrap 
several folds of cheese cloth around 
the outside of the pitcher. Keep these 
constantly wet and place the pitcher 
in a draught. The evaporation of the 



moisture from the cheese cloth tends 
to cool the contents of the pitcher. 

To Test Water. — Fill a number of 
tumblers half full of the suspected 
water, and employ the following 
tests; 

To test for lime, use a small quan- 
tity of oxalic acid. The lime will be 
revealed in a white precipitate. 

To test for carbonate of iron, use 
a tincture of galls. This will yield 
a black precipitate. 

To test for vegetable and animal 
matter, use a, small quantity of sul- 
phuric acid. The water will become 
black. 

To test for copper, dip a penknife 
in the water. The copper will be de- 
posited in a yellow coating. 

To Purify Water. — ^When water in 
wells or other receptacles smells bad, 
suspend in it lumps of charcoal in a 
basket or net, so that they qan be re- 
moved and replaced at intervals. 

To Clarify Water. — Water in 
springs, wells, and streams often be- 
comes muddy after heavy rains, and 
the water of some streams always 
holds a large amount of liquid mud 
and other impurities in solution. In 
such cases it becomes important to 
clarify the water to make it more pal- 
atable and attractive, and this is es- 
pecially the case when filters are used, 
as otherwise the filter soon clogs up 
and becomes useless. 

Alum is a universal agent for pre- 
cipitating impurities in suspension or 
even in solution. It is very common- 
ly employed along the Missouri and 
Mississippi rivers and other muddy 
streams. 

To quickly clarify a pitcher of 
drinking water, tie a lump of alum 
to a string and swing it about in the 
water. The sediment will settle. 

Or, for larger quantities, use 1 tea- 
spoonful of pulverized alum to 4 gal- 
lons of drinking water. Stir the water 
before putting in the alum. After the 
water has settled, draw it off in such 
a way as not to disturb the sediment. 
A tablespoonful of the alum will set- 
tle the contents of a hogshead of 
water. The alum itself, if too much 



116 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



is not used, will settle and be carried 
off in the sediment. 

Or lime is recommended, used in 
the form of certain salts of lime, 
either chloride, nitrate, or bicarbonate 
of lime, or caustic lime. Use 1 part 
of any of these salts of lime to 1,000 
parts of water. 

Or sulphate of alumina is recom- 
mended for clarifying water contain- 
ing vegetable or animal matter. The 
formula is as follows: Bisulphate of 
alumina (neutral solution), 1 ounce; 
water, 435 gallons. 

Or dissolve 3 ounces of saltpeter in 
1 quart of warm water, and throw 
the solution into the cistern or well. 

Or, to purify putrid water: Water, 
1 pound; sulphuric acid, 8 drops. Mix 
and filter through charcoal. 

Or water, 8 gallons; powdered 
aliun, 1 ounce. Dissolve with agita- 
tion, then allow it to rest for twenty- 
four hours, decant into another ves- 
sel, and add a solution of carbonate 
of soda until it ceases to produce a 
precipitate. 

Or instead of alum add 7 or 8 
grains of red sulphate of iron, then 
proceed as before. 

Or add a little aqueous chlorine to 
the foul water. 

Or arrange a suitable pipe to the 
end of a pair of bellows (double bel- 
lows are best), and force the air 
through the water for some time, then 
allow it to settle for use. 

Water Filters. — The ordinary house- 
hold appliances for filtering water are 
rarely preventives of disease. Such 
filters are not ordinarily cleansed 
often enough, and become receptacles 
for disease germs instead of means of 
prevention. 

The better practice is to boil drink- 
ing water from twenty minutes to 
half an hour when there is danger of 
contamination. The following are a 
number of devices that may be rec- 
ommended to make muddy or other- 
wise contaminated water clear for ap- 
pearance sake. It must be borne in 
mind, however, that these processes 
and all other filters merely strain the 
water in a, mechanical way, and do 



not remove or destroy the germs of 
contagious diseases. These cannot be 
destroyed without boiling the water, 
as just recommended: 

Cistern Filter. — The rainfall col- 
lected in cisterns is a valuable source 
of water supply in localities where 
it is difScult or costly to drive a well, 
and also in regions where the water is 
hard. Rain water is soft, and hence 
especially adapted to laundry pur- 
poses. 

Cisterns should be caref uUy screened 
with wire netting to exclude insects, 
toads, and other vermin, and should 
be so arranged as not to admit sur- 
face water. They should be kept 
scrupulously clean, the first rainfall 
being excluded to allow accumulated 
dust and dirt to be washed off the 
roof. The average rainfall through- 




Cistern Made of Tile. 

out the United States on a roof sur- 
face 40 feet square will supply five 
or six barrels a day, which is sufficient 
for an average family. 
Cisterns are often built in two com- 



HEATING, LIGHTING, AND REFRIGERATION 117 



partments, one above the other, with 
a third compartment between, which 
should be a box containing filtering 
material, such as broken stones, peb- 
bles, charcoal, and sand. A sponge 
is sometimes placed at the outlet. 
Thus water may be received in the 
upper compartment while the lower 
compartment is being emptied and 
cleansed; then the contents of the up- 
per part may be strained through the 
filter until the lower part is filled and 
the upper part, in turn, is renovat- 
ed. The box containing the filtering 
material should be detachable, and 
this material should be occasionally 
cleansed or replaced. 

A little ingenuity in the construc- 
tion of such a cistern and filter will 
be amply compensated by a pure and 
abundant supply of soft water for 
household purposes. A round or egg- 
shaped cistern is superior to one with 
square corners, especially in the lower 
receptacle, from which the water is 
directly drawn or pumped for drink- 
ing purposes. 

Homemade Water Pilters. — Rain 
water collected in barrels from a roof 
or otherwise is a necessity in some 
localities, and is often more whole- 
some for drinking purposes than hard 
water. The following is a cheap and 
easy way to make a filter just as 
good as a patent filter costing ten 
times as much: 

Take a new vinegar barrel or an 
oak tub that has never been used, 
either a full cask or half size. Stand 
It on end raised on brick or stone 
from the ground, with the faucet near 
the bottom. Make a tight false bot- 
tom three or four inches from the 
bottom of the cask. Perforate this 
with small gimlet holes, and cover it 
with a piece of clean white canvas. 
Place on this false bottom a layer of 
clean pebbles three or four inches in 
thickness. Next, a. layer of clean 
washed sand and gravel. Place on 
this coarsely granulated charcoal 
about the size of small peas. Char- 
coal made from hard maple is the 
best. After putting in a half bushel 
or so, pound it down firmly. Then 



put in more until the tub is filled 
within one foot of the top. Add a 
three-inch layer of pebbles, and throw 
over the top a piece of canvas as a 
strainer. This canvas strainer can be 




"A Cheap and Easy Way to Make a Filter." 

removed and washed occasionally and 
the cask can be dumped out, pebbles 
cleansed, and charcoal renewed every 
spring and fall. Or once a year may 
be sufficient. 

This filter may be set in the cellar 
and used only for drinking water. Or 
it may be used in time of drought for 
filtering stagnant water, which would 
otherwise be unpalatable, for the use 
of stock. This also makes a good 
cider filter for the purpose of making 
vinegar. The cider should first be 
passed through cheese cloth to remove 
all coarser particles. 

Or a small cheap filter may be made 
from a flower pot. A fine sponge may 
be inserted in the hole and the pot 



118 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



filled about as directed for the above 
filter. It may be placed in the top 
of a j ar, which will receive the filtered 
water. 

Or a valuable substitute for char- 
coal in the above filters is sponge iron 
obtained by burning finely divided 
iron ore with charcoal. This can be 
obtained in the locality of iron mines 
or smelting furnaces. This is much 
more powerful than charcoal, and is 
said to completely purify contaminat- 
ed waters. 

ICE AKD BKFSI6EBATI0N 

Nature of Ice. — Ice is one of a 
number of substances that occupy a 
greater volume in the solid than in 
the liquid state. At the moment of 
freezing it expands with great force 
about one eleventh in bulk, as is testi- 
fied by the bursting of frozen water 
pipes. 

An interesting experiment consists 
in passing a wire through a solid 
block of ice without cutting it in two. 
The ice should be supported at both 
ends, leaving the middle free, and the 
wire over it with weights attached to 
either end. The pressure on the wire 
raises the temperature of the ice to 
the melting point and allows the wire 
to sink; but the wire absorbs some of 
the heat, and causes the water to 
freeze upon its upper surface; hence 
the seam is closed, and after the pas- 
sage of the wire the block of ice re- 
mains intact. Its course, however, can 
be traced by the air bubbles which it 
leaves behind. 

Under ordinary conditions water 
freezes at 33° F., and does not melt 
until the temperature is raised above 
that point; but under pressure, as 
above noted, ice will be converted into 
water at a lower temperature, having 
been melted under high pressure at 
18° C. If water is perfectly still it 
may be lowered to 23° F. before freez- 
ing, but the slightest jar will cause it 
to freeze when the temperature rises 
to 33° F. 

Uses of Ice. — In addition to its nat- 
ural service in transforming lakes and 



rivers during winter in northern cli- 
mates into solid roadways, ice is in 
great demand as an antiseptic or pre- 
serving agent. Formerly it was sup- 
posed that meats and carcases of ani- 
mals intended for food must be frozen 
to be preserved. The discovery of the 
practicability of preserving meats and 
vegetables by means of ice, but with- 
out freezing them, is comparatively 
recent. Now, in addition to the house- 
hold refrigerator, refrigerating cars 
convey beef, fruit, and vegetables 
across continents, and refrigerating 
steamships take tropical fruits and 
other products from southern to north- 
ern climes and return with dairy 
products, northern fruits, and other 
perishable articles that could not 
otherwise be obtained in tropical coun- 
tries. In many cities cold-storage 
houses also preserve, with a very slight 
percentage of loss, dairy products, 
meats, fruits, and vegetables for pe- 
riods varying from months to years. 
Cold-storage vaults protect furs and 
valuable garments from the ravages of 
moths and other insects. Ice is also 
now regarded as absolutely necessary 
in the summer months to preserve the 
bodies of the dead until the time of 
burial. 

To Harvest Commercial Ice. — Ice 
has been an important article of com- 
merce since the time of Nero, and in 
cold countries family ice houses are 
very common. Sometimes these stor- 
age places are merely pits or caves 
under ground, or partly under ground, 
but an ice house wholly above ground 
is to be preferred. 

Ice from salt or brackish water is 
nearly pure, as freezing expels the 
mineral ingredients, but it is sufiS- 
ciently contaminated on the surface to 
be unfit for many purposes. Hence 
the best ice crop is" usually gathered 
from fresh-water ponds, or lakes, or 
in rivers above tide water. A great 
deal of ice is also manufactured arti- 
ficially. Commercial ice houses are 
usually built of wood, having hollow 
walls that may be double, triple, or 
quadruple, the spaces between being 
filled with sawdust, spent tan bark, 



HEATING, LIGHTING, AND EEFRIGERATION lid 



or some other poor conductor of 
heat. 

' In harvesting ice the usual practice 
is to scrape the snow from the surface 
of the ice by means of a scraper 
drawn by horses, to plane off the soft 
porous top of the ice if necessary by 
means of a horse planer, and to mark 
the ice into blocks by running a series 
of grooves about 5 feet apart and 3 
inches deep so as to make blocks 5 
feet square. Ice is usually cut when 
it is about 2 feet thick. After the ice 
has been marked one row of blocks is 
usually cut through by means of a 
handsaw, and pushed under out of 
the way or pulled up on the ice. The 
succeeding blocks are pried off with 
a crowbar, towed to the landing place, 
and loaded into wagons or run up an 
inclined plane to the storehouse and 
packed away. The blocks are stood 
on end in a solid mass. A space 
is left between the ice and the walls 
of the ice house in which are gutters 
and drainways to receive and carry 
off the drainage from the melted ice. 
Ice — ^Domestic Harvest. — To gather 
ice for home use, cut it as soon as it 
is thick enough, and before the sur- 
face has been covered with snow or 
has had a chance to freeze and thaw 
a number of times. If a, light snow 




"To Gather Ice for Home Use." 

falls before the ice is gathered it is 
advisable to clear off a sufficient space 
before a thaw sets in. A horse plow 
for marking the ice is desirable, and 



one can usually be borrowed if neces- 
sary, but a crosscut saw may be used. 
After one row of blocks has been 
sawed out it is only necessary to saw 
across the ends of the blocks. They 
may be separated lengthwise by mark- 
ing with an ax and splitting off with, 
an ice pick or chisel. It is not de- 
sirable to cut cakes larger than 2 by 
3 feet if the work is to be done by 
hand. Provide a runway or ice ladder 
about 36 inches wide and 13 feet long 
to reach from the sled into the water. 
Drive two upright planks or timbers 
into the ice, and attach a crossbar at 
the top of the sled on which to sup- 
port one end of the runway, the other 
reaching down in the water. Two 
men with ice hooks can puU a cake 
3 feet long, 3 feet wide, and 18 inches 
or more in depth up this runway and 
load it upon the sled without undue 
exertion. 

To Preserve Ice. — The two requisites 
to preserve ice are the exclusion of 
heat and outer air, and the drainage 
of the water produced by melting 
without at the same time allowing the 
cold air surrounding the ice to escape. 
A piece of ice of SO pounds weight 
exposed at a temperature of 80°, but 
placed on cross slats so as to be per- 
fectly drained, will not melt under 
twenty-four hours. But if exposed at 
the same temperature in a tight vessel 
that will retain the water produced by 
melting, it will dissolve in six or seven 
hours. Hence ice houses, refrigerators, 
or ice boxes should have double sides, 
bottom and top, with a space between 
the casings filled with nonconducting 
materials to keep out the external 
heat, all doors and other apertures 
should be sealed as nearly air-tight as 
possible, and the contents should be 
arranged to provide perfect drainage. 
All water must be removed at once, 
and the drainage pipe must be fitted 
with a trap so that cold air cannot 
escape nor outer air be admitted. If 
these principles are observed, any in- 
genious person can build an ice house 
or refrigerator, or design one to be 
built by a local carpenter that will 
answer all pKictical purposes. 



120 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



To Make an Ice House. — The size 
of an ice house must, of course, be 
determined by the number of persons 
that are to make use of it. The in- 
terior should be so proportioned as 
to admit of packing cakes of any pre- 
ferred size, as 3 by 3 feet, in a solid 
mass, but with an air space between 
the outside of the cakes and the wall 
of the ice house to admit of drainage. 
Hence an ice house 14 by 20 feet in- 
side dimensions will admit of a layer 
of twenty-four cakes with a space of 
1 foot clear aU around. 

Such an ice house carried up eight 
or ten layers would last two or three 
ordinary families for a year. It costs 
but little more to build a good-sized 
ice house, and often two or three 
neighbors can club together to advan- 
tage, both to reduce the cost of build- 
ing the house, and also the labor of 
filling it. 

Or, if more ice is harvested than 
one family requires, it can frequently 
be sold to neighbors at a profit suffi- 
cient to admit of paying for the first 
cost and for the labor of harvesting 
the ice each year. 

To Build Ice Houses, make a frame 
of two or three joists, supported on 
posts raised a foot or more from the 
ground, and have a shed roof sloping 
to the north. Board up the outside 
and make another frame inside 10 or 
13 inches from the outer boarding, 
and fill in the space between with 
shavings, sawdust, or spent tan bark 
packed as solidly as possible. Lay a 
solid plank floor and give it a pitch 
toward one corner with an outlet for 
drainage. Bmld double doors, reach- 
ing from the outer to the inner wall 
and packed solidly with nonconduct- 
ing material. Or have a separate door 
in each wall, but the former is the 
better method. 

To Fill an Ice House. — First cover 
the floor with sawdust, tan bark, or 
other suitable material at least 2 feet 
in thickness. Lay on this successive 
layers of ice in a solid mass, but leave 
a space of 13 inches all around. Cover 
the ice and fill the pitch of the build- 
ing to a thickness of several feet with 



nonconducting material, but leave an 
air space between the top of this ma- 
terial and the roof. As the Ice is 




Homemade Tackle. 

removed from day to day for use, 
carefully replace the covering. 

To Protect an Ice House. — Build a 
cheap trellis of slats or rough poles 
8 or 10 inches from the walls aU 
around, and also extending over the 
roof, and train the common woodbine 
or English ivy, or even clematis, morn- 
ing glory, or other similar trailing vine 
to run over it. This can readily be 
done in most localities and forms a 
cheap and effective shade, that is a 
perfect defense against the direct rays 
of the sun. The trellis will prevent 
the plants from causing the boards of 
the ice house to decay, and by leaving 
a space between for circulation of air, 
will greatly assist in lowering the tem- 
perature. A mantle of vines also cov- 
ers the bare ugliness of the cheap 
boarding of an ice house and tends to 
make it an object of beauty. 

Or a skeleton ice house may be built 
by driving posts in the ground to 
make a frame and boarding them up 
to any desired height. Sawdust may 
be laid directly on the ground, but to 
prevent washouts and provide drain- 
age it is better to throw in a few large 
stones, level them roughly, and lay a 
loose board floor a foot or more from. 



HEATING, LIGHTING, AND REFRIGERATION 121 



the ground. Cover this with a layer 
of coarse hay or straw to prevent the 
sawdust from falling through, and on 
this put a foot or more of sawdust. 
Lay the ice in the middle in a solid 
mass, but leave a space of 2 feet all 
around between the ice and the boards 
and pack this space and cover the ice 
with nonconducting material, and lay 
a roof of loose boards over all, with 
an air space between. Such an ice 
house can be thrown up and boarded 
in a day while the ice is being drawn, 
and the planks can be taken down and 
stored away, if desired, as rapidly as 
the ice is removed in summer. 

Or ice may be stored in a pen made 
of rails built up corncob fashion as 
the ice is put in. A floor of rails 
should be laid a foot or so from the 
ground and covered with straw, on 
which sawdust should be packed a 
foot or more deep. Lay the ice in a 
solid mass, pack with sawdust all 
around, cover the top with 3 feet of 
sawdust, and thatch with coarse straw. 
Over this lay a shed roof of boards 
tacked down with a few nails. 

If morning glories or other quick- 
growing vines can be trained to run 
over the rails, it will greatly assist in 
preserving the ice in summer. 

Or a load of sawdust may be thrown 
on the ground, a pile of ice built up 
on this, and a rough board frame 
merely tacked together at the corners 
about 2 feet distant all around from 
the pile. This space must, of course, 
be filled with sawdust, the top covered 
over to an equal depth, and rough 
boards or canvas thrown over all. 

To Hake an Ice Chest. — A practical 
ice chest may be made by building 
a tight box of matched boards with 
double sides 6 inches apart, having an 
inner chamber 3 feet long, 2 feet deep, 
and 2 feet wide. This will hold a 
block of 100 pounds or more of ice, 
and leave room all around for milk, 
butter, fresh meat, and other articles. 
This ice box must be furnished with 
a double lid packed with charcoal or 
sawdust and fitting tightly so as to 
exclude the outer air. It will preserve 
ice practically as well as an expensive 



refrigerator. The inner compartment 
must be furnished with a small pipe 
to carry off the water from the melt- 
ing ice. 

Or a cheap ice box may be made by 
simply setting one dry-goods box in- 
side of another. There must be a 
space of 6 inches all around between 
the two. Pack this space closely with 
powdered charcoal or sawdust, and 
make a double lid, packed in the same 
manner, to fit the larger box. Provide 
a drainage pipe to remove the melt- 
ing ice. 

Or place a small cask or half bar- 
rel inside of a large cask and fill the 
space all around with charcoal. A 
tube from the bottom of the lower 
cask will carry off the melted ice. 
Furnish the inner cask with a remov- 
able lid and the outer cask with 
double cover packed with charcoal. 
Also provide a charcoal bag a foot 
thick or more to lay over the top of 
the inner cask. By filling the inner 
cask two thirds full of powdered ice, 
or with snow in winter, ices may be 
frozen in it, or by putting in a cake 
of ice it may be used as an ordinary 
refrigerator. 

Ice Bags. — To preserve small quan- 
tities of ice, make two bags of heavy 
woolen goods, one of which should be 
2 or 3 inches wider on all sides than 
the other. Place the smaller bag in- 
side of the larger and stuff the space 
between with canvas. A block of ice 
placed in a bag of this description 
will be preserved as long as in an or- 
dinary ice box. A small bit of rubber 
tubing should be inserted at one cor- 
ner to provide drainage. 

A Cooling Box. — In tropical regions 
where ice is scarce, or unobtainable, 
it is customary to construct a water- 
tight box, say 28 inches square and 
10 inches deep, which should be filled 
with water. A shelf 30 by 30 inches 
is suspended from this by four posts, 
2 by 2 inches and 36 inches long. Com- 
mon burlap sacks are tacked closely 
about the sides. Pieces of woolen 
stuff", such as old woolen imderwear, 
are placed around the edge of the box, 
with one end in the water and the 



122 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



other hanging outside and resting on 
the burlap. The whole is suspended 
in a shady place where/ the air can 
circulate freely around and through 
it, and where the sun will not shine 
on it. The air passing through the 
burlap causes evaporation of the wa- 
ter, and the burlap is kept dripping 
wet by the woolen stuff drawing water 
from the box as evaporation takes 
place. This is the principle by which 
the box is cooled. When the box is 
first filled the burlap should be thor- 
oughly wet. Afterwards, if filled reg- 
ularly, it will keep saturated. 

The box is filled with water. On 
one side the burlap is allowed to hang 
free over the suspended shelf. This 
curtain is the door of the cooler. But- 
ter placed on the shelf will keep per- 
fectly solid. Even where ice is plenti- 
ful this is a convenient way to cool 
hot dishes that you do not wish to put 
in the refrigerator. 

Care of the Refrigerator. — Put a 
saucer of unslacked lime in the re- 
frigerator to keep it sweet. Place in 
the ice chest two or three lumps of 
charcoal as large as an egg, changing 
them two or three times a month. 
They will absorb all odors of cooked 
food and the like. Keep everything 
in the refrigerator covered. Have a 
number of glass fruit jars with screw 
tops in which to place liquids, and a 
glass jar for drinking water. This 
will save cracking off ice. 

Few housekeepers take the necessary 
pains to keep the ice box scrupulously 
clean. It should be wiped out daily, 
and when the ice is exhausted, be- 
fore a new piece is put in, a strong 



solution of caustic potash or sal 
soda should be poured through the 
waste pipes to cleanse and disinfect 
them. 

To Break Ice. — Use an awl or a 
darning needle and tap it gently with 
a hammer. Make a row of holes across 
the ice, which wUl crack straight 
through beneath. 

To Preserve Ice. — To preserve ice 
it must be isolated and surrounded 
with nonconducting material. There 
must be no access of the outer air to 
the ice except on top. Cold air is 
heavier than warm, hence the air which 
has been cooled by the melting of the 
ice settles upon its surface and cannot 
be displaced by the warmer air from 
above unless the cold air is allowed 
to escape or is displaced by a current, 
which must be avoided. The larger 
and colder a block of ice is, and the 
less it is exposed to warmth before 
being placed in the refrigerator, the 
longer it will keep. 

Ice varies in temperature all the 
way from below zero to 30° F. before 
melting. Hence the fact that a piece 
of ice is not all melted by exposure to 
warm air is /no criterion that it is not 
losing heat and rapidly approaching 
the melting point. If a piece of ice 
must be exposed to warm air for a 
time before being placed in the re- 
frigerator it should be wrapped up in 
a heavy cloth or newspapers. If these 
are left on after the ice has been put 
in the refrigerator, so much the bet- 
ter. The larger the block of ice, the 
slower it melts. Hence it is economy 
to purchase ice in as large quantities 
as the refrigerator will hold. 



CHAPTER HI 

THE DAY'S ROUTINE 

KINDLING AND CARE OF FIRES — CLE AMNG AND POLISHING 
STOVES — DISHWASfflNG — CARE OF KITCHEN WARES — CARE 
OF GLASSWARE AND CUT GLASS— STEEL KNIVES AND FORKS 
—CARE OF SILVERWARE— CARE OF SINKS AND DISPOSAL OF 
GARBAGE— CHAMBER WORK— CARE OF LAMPS— PREPARATIONS 
FOR THE NIGHT 



EINDLING ANB CASE OF FIBES 

To Kindle Fires. — Suggestions for 
kindling fires must naturally be modi- 
fied according to circumstances. There 
is a vast difference between the elec- 
tric range that, by pulling a lever, can 
be instantly adjusted at any given 
temperature, the gas range that re- 
quires merely the scratch of a match, 
the coal or wood kitchen range, the 
fireplace, and the furnace. 

The principles of combustion, how- 
ever, are identical in all cases, and a 
proper understanding of these will en- 
able anyone to build a good fire as 
quickly as may be under all circum- 
stances. Combustion consists in the 
union of the oxygen of the air with va- 
rious substances, and this takes place 
at different temperatures according to 
the substances burned. Phosphorus 
has so strong an affinity for oxygen 
that, if exposed to the air, it will burn 
instantly. Hence pure phosphorus 
must be kept under water, and when 
used in making matches is mixed with 
other materials to prevent too speedy 
combustion. Sulphur kindles at a 
somewhat higher temperature than 
phosphorus, pine or other soft woods 
at still higher temperatures, and so on 
with charcoal, coke, hard wood, coal, 
and various other kinds of fuel. 
Hence two things are necessary to 
kindle a fire: a draught of air to sup- 
ply plenty of oxygen, and heat enough 



to cause the oxygen to unite freely 
with the kind of fuel used. 

All substances may exist in three 
forms, as gases, liquids, or solids — as 
in the case of steam, water, and ice — 
and of these three forms, since the 
oxygen of the air can penetrate quick- 
ly to every part of it, the easiest to 
kindle is gas. 

Heat decomposes solid substances 
and liquids, and causes them first to 
melt and afterwards to turn into gas, 
or, in the case of compounds, into 
various gases, or in some cases to im- 
mediately throw off various gases 
without the preliminary stage of melt- 
ing. The flames that rise from the sur- 
face of fuel are caused by the gases 
thrown off in the process of combus- 
tion. Hence, when heat enough is 
supplied to cause fuel to decompose 
into various gases, these may be read- 
ily kindled, and those forms of fuel 
that throw off inflammable gases at 
the lowest temperatures are most suit- 
able for kindling. Kerosene oil, for 
example, at ordinary temperatures will 
put out a match as readily as water, 
but at about 110° to 125° F. it com- 
mences to throw off a volatile and in- 
flammable gas, and at a still higher 
temperature it maybe instantly trans- 
formed into gas by means of what we 
call an explosion. 

The difficulties to be overcome in 
kindling a fire are to raise the mass 
of fuel to a sufficiently high tempera- 



123 



124 



HOUSfittOLD DISCOVERIES 



ture, so that inflammable gases will be 
released and kindled; also to shield 
the fuel from the surrounding atmos- 
phere (which tends to cool it), and at 
the same time to furnish, by means of 
a draught, a sufficient supply of oxy- 
gen to promote combustion. 

Wet or green wood, especially hard 
wood in large, solid chunks, and soft 
or hard coal in large lumps, are diffi- 
cult to kindle, because they are very 
cold, and because only a comparatively 
small surface is exposed to the action 
of heat from materials used as kin- 
dlings. It is quite common to notice 
in building fires that large chunks of 
coal or wood become kindled and burn 
for a, time, but afterwards go out. 
This is because the heat of the kin- 
dlings warms the surface of the 
chunks enough to drive off the inflam- 
mable gases in small quantities, but 
is not sufficient to warm the re- 
mainder to a point where the oxygen 
could combine and continue the com- 
bustion. Indeed, the charred or par- 
tially burned surface may shield the 
heart of the chunk by preventing the 
oxygen from reaching it. Hence, to 
make combustion possible, there must 
be sufficient heat to cause the entire 
chunk to throw off inflammable gases. 

Another difficulty is to admit enough 
air to supply the oxygen necessary to 
combustion, but not enough to put out 
the fire by lowering its temperature. 
The difficulty of kindling a fire in a 
grate is due to the fact that the con- 
tact of air above and around the fuel, 
which is not and cannot be consumed 
in the process of combustion, tends to 
cool it and thus to retard combus- 
tion. Hence a draught should pass 
through the fire from beneath, and 
be regulated in such a way that no 
more air will be admitted than is 
required. 

The explanation of the draught is 
found in the well-known fact that hot 
air rises. When a fire is well under way 
a considerable current of heated air 
rises through the stovepipe and chim- 
ney, which creates a. strong draught. 
This, if not regulated, makes the fire 
roar and send up sparks that may set 



fire to the chimney or even to the roof. 
A feeble flame like that of a match 
creates very little suction. Hence to 
start a draught is one of the prob- 
lems of fire building. 

To Clean the Fire Box. — The first 
step in building a good coal or wood 
fire is to dmnp the grate, clean out 
the fire box, and remove the ashes 
from the ash pit beneath. The grate 
should be thoroughly freed from clink- 
ers. The object of cleaning the grate 
and fire box is both to remove ashes 
that would take up heat at the ex- 
pense of the kindling, and to admit 
the oxygen of the air through every 
part of the grate so as to kindle the 
fire uniformly and to penetrate every 
part of the fire box. No time is gained 
in attempting to kindle a stove or fur- 
nace fire on top of old coal or ashes. 
The fire wiU kindle slowly if at all, 
will burn unevenly, and will be likely 
to go out during the day. 

Chicken, turkey, and goose wings 
will be found useful to brush out the 
fire box of a range, hearth, or cook 
stove. 

The object of cleaning out the ash 
pit is to create directly below the 
flame an empty air chamber in which 
the air will be warmed by radiation 
downward before it is drawn up into 
the fire. 

To lay Fires. — If the fire in a cook 
stove or range is allowed to go out at 
night, it is advisable to lay a fresh 
one in readiness for kindling next 
morning. Whatever kindling matter 
is employed should first be laid on 
the clean grate over the whole surface 
of the fire box. The substances used 
for kindling are usually of two sorts, 
one lighter and more inflammable than 
the other, as paper, excelsior, kero- 
sene, or the like for the first, and 
kindling wood, charcoal, or coke for 
the second. Whatever kindling matter 
is employed, the most inflammable 
should be first laid over the whole 
surface of the grate, and in such quan- 
tity as to certainly kindle the second. 
The second layer in like manner should 
cover the whole grate and in such 
quantity as to certainly kindle the 



THE DAY'S ROUTINE 



ns 



fuel. And sufficient fuel should be 
laid on the top, or added at the proper 
time after ignition, to maintain the 
fire and to kindle additional fuel, thus 
forming a bed of coals across the en- 
tire iire box. 

The mistakes usually made in Are 
building are to use too little kindling, 
to lay kindling over a part of the 
grate instead of covering it; to use 
too much kindling and dispose it in 
such a way as to choke the draught, 
or to smother the kindling by covering 
it with such a large amount of cold, 
heavy fuel as to choke the draught 
and lower the temperature below the 
kindling point. 

Hence a smaE amount of kindling 
spread uniformly over the iire box 
and lightly sprinkled with a small 
amount of coal or fed with a few 
small sticks of wood in the beginning 
will kindle a iire more quickly and 
surely than a much larger amount so 
disposed as to choke the draught and 
immediately smother it. Hence also 
such kindling as excelsior, which is 
finely cut and at the same time springy 
and elastic, by admitting the air to 
every part, heating quickly, and throw- 
ing off a large quantity of inflammable 
gases, is better than leaves of books 
or newspapers, which tend to mat 
down and prevent the draught from 
comiog through. Coke and charcoal 
are good kindling because they are 
porous, friable, and burn evenly for 
a long time. 

To lay a Furnace Fire. — ^Lay first 
sufficient paper or excelsior across the 
iire box to kindle the wood; on this 
lay a light wood kindling split fine 
and built corncob fashion clear across 
the fire box, placing the sticks closely 
enough to prevent the coal from fall- 
ing through, but not to prevent the 
draught from coming up. A little 
coke or charcoal or a layer of hard 
wood across the fire box will serve to 
create a bed of coals to ignite the 
heavier fuel. But do not use more 
wood than is necessary; less wiU be 
required where the coal is not too 
coarse. Stove coal is large enough for 
most furnaces, and the smallest coal 



that the grate will admit will be found 
to give the best results. 

After lighting the kindlings throw 
on j ust sufficient coal to make a single 
layer sprinkled evenly across the fire 
box. Keep the drauglit open until this 
is flaming brightly and cover with a 
thicker layer, also sprinkled evenly. 
When this burns up the fire box may 
be iUled as needed. 

Kindlings. — The kindling matter 
most commonly used consists of paper, 
light pine or other resinous woods, 
pine cones, cobs with or without kero- 
sene, charcoal, coke, and various com- 
pounds of resin, tallow, tar, turpen- 
tine, and the like. 

Paper as Kindling. — If the leaves 
of old books, magazines, and news- 
papers are used as kindling, they must 
not be laid in the grate flat or bound 
together. Even two or three thick- 
nesses laid side by side tend to protect 
one another and to be only partly 
burned or charred. The flat surfaces 
often faU across the grate and ob- 
struct the draught. Hence \ise sepa- 
rate sheets of paper, crumple and 
twist them into loose rolls, and lay 
these across the grate corncob fashion, 
leaving spaces between the roUs to 
admit the air to every part. 

Wood as Kindling. — If light pine 
or other resinous woods are used as 
kindling they should be split very fine, 
or in two grades, one iiner than the 
other, and the sticks should be short 
enough to lie straight in the grate, and 
not stand partly on end so as to pro- 
ject above the coal or other fuel. In 
fact, the best wood kindlings are those 
sold in cities and made by tying vidth 
tarred rope at intervals of two or 
three inches apart a bundle of strips 
sawed from pine slabs, and sawing 
across the bundles between the ties. 
Hence these kindlings are in chugks 
two or three inches long, which lie 
evenly across the fire box and admit 
the air in every part. Such kindling 
may be obtained very cheap at any 
sawmill and is a great convenience. 

Or excelsior is perhaps the most use- 
ful of all wood kindlings, and in many 
localities one of the cheapest. 



126 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



Coke and Charcoal. — An enterpris- 
ing citizen in a small New England 
city has built up a comfortable for- 
tune by selling charcoal in large paper 
flour sacks at ten cents a sack and ad- 
vertising its virtues as a fire kindler. 
It can, however, be bought very much 
cheaper in quantities, and if used with 
economy need not be regarded as an 
expensive luxury. 

Kerosene as Kindling. — The fact 
that kerosene oil gives off at a com- 
paratively low temperature a very in- 
flammable gas, and that in most fam- 
ilies it is always at hand, causes it, 
notwithstanding the dangers that at- 
tend upon this practice, to be used 
quite generally for the purpose of 
kindling fires. The principal danger 
in the use of kerosene is that of ex- 
ploding a considerable quantity con- 
fined in a tin can or other tight pack- 
age. If oil is poured on a fire from 
a can the fire will foUow the? stream 
up to the can and explode it, throw- 
ing the burning liquid in aU directions, ' 
besides causing injury from shock. 
Many explosions have occurred in this 
way from live coals in the grate or 
ash pit when it was supposed that the 
fire was entirely out. Hence imder 
no circumstances should kerosene be 
poured from a can into a stove or fur- 
nace. This rule is the more impera- 
tive and sensible because the practice 
is neither necessary nor desirable. 

Better and quicker results can be 
obtained by first pouring the kerosene 
into an open vessel, as a cup or an old 
tomato can, and dashing it over the 
kindling in such a way as to spread 
it over the largest possible surface. 
Kerosene may be thrown on a fire in 
this fashion with no more danger than 
attends upon a puff of flame from the 
inflammable gases piroduced. Hence if 
it is employed at all, a cup or small 
basin should be set apart for this pur- 
pose and invariably used. 

Or pour a quart of a cheap grade of 
kerosene into a milk pan or tin bucket 
and fill it full of cobs standing on 
end. Cover with another milk pan or 
pail to prevent evaporation. The cobs 
wUl thus absorb enough oil to start 



fires quickly. They ean be handled by 
the upper end, to which the oil does 
not penetrate. When a cob is re- 
moved, a fresh one may be put in its 
place, and thus a quart of oil will 
start a large number of fires. This 
method of handling kerosene is cheap, 
clean, and entirely safe. 

Or a torch such as is used by train- 
men, in parades, etc., may be lighted 
and held beneath the grate until the 
fire kindles. It must, of course, be 
removed before the heat is sufficient to 
cause an explosion. 

Pine Cones as Kindling. — In some 
locaUties pine cones a^e plentiful, and 
as they are light, easy to get, and full 
of resin, they make excellent kindlings. 
Or pine cones, if desired, may be 
saturated with kerosene the same as 
cobs. 

Gas as Kindling. — Where gas is 
burned in the kitchen or in the cellar 
it may be used conveniently to kindle 
fires in the range or furnace. A gas 
burner may be obtained for a few 
cents and connected with a neighbor- 
ing gas jet by a length of flexible 
gas pipe. The whole equipment should 
cost less than a dollar. After the fuel 
has been laid the burner may be lit 
and inserted below the grate as near 
to the coal as possible. This kindles 
the fire surely, quickly, and econom- 
ically, and avoids the trouble of pro- 
viding other kindling and the litter 
of handling and cleaning it up. This 
method will kindle any fire where the 
grate can be reached from below. 

Hatches. — Have a match box near 
the range attached to a piece of sand- 
paper and put the matches in the box 
head down. Then you will always 
know which end to strike. Have a 
separate receptacle for burnt matches. 

To Quicken low Fires. — When a 
coal fire burns low, throw a table- 
spoonful of salt on the coals. Or put 
in an old ham or shoulder bone from 
which the meat has been taken. This 
burns a long time and with great heat. 
Or use old corks and empty spools for 
this purpose. 

To Make Kindlings. — To make kin- 
dlings for home use or for sale, obtain 



THE DAY'S ROUTINE 



127 



a quantity of clean fine sawdust free 
from all moisture. Prepare a smooth, 
flat surface of boards by tacking them 
close together across a pair of carpen- 
ter's horses and spread a layer of saw- 
dust over them. Dissolve in a large 
set kettle any quantity of resin and 
tallow, in the proportion of 3 ounces 
of tallow to 1 pound of resin, and stir 
in sawdust of pine or other resinous 
wood to make the mixture as thick 
as possible. Spread this while hot 
upon the boards, smoothing it across 
the top by pressing a board upon it, 
and if desired mark it off into squares 
with a straightedge. When dry these 
squares can be broken apart and used 
for kindling fires, or sold at a profit. 

Or melt 1 quart of tar in S pounds 
of resin, stir, and remove from the 
fire. While cooling add J pint spirits 
of turpentine and stir in sawdust 
from pine or other resinous wood, with 
or without finely powdered charcoal. 
While hot spread out on boards cov- 
ered with a layer of sawdust, and 
when cold break up into small lumps 
for home use or sale. 

Kange Fire — To Save Coal. — To 
economize coal in the kitchen range, 
keep the draughts closed when special 
heat is not required for cooking, iron- 
ing, and the like. Do not try to keep 
the fire box banked full of burning 
coals merely to keep up the fire. After 
any special cooking is finished, rake 
out the ashes lightly from below and 
sprinkle fresh coal evenly over the hot 
fire with a shovel. Keep the draughts 
closed unless gas escapes into the 
room. In that case, open them until 
blue flames dart across the coals. This 
is a signal that the gas has been 
ignited. The draughts may then be 
closed and the dampers opened. If 
the draught is strong the stove covers 
may be tilted slightly. Thus managed 
a, range fire will keep for many hours 
and consume but little coal. When 
■ heat is required close the dampers and 
open the hearth draught, and the fire 
will start up quickly. 

To Shake and Clean a Range Fire. 
— Keep ashes from the edges of the 
fire box and the center will take care 



of itself. Never shake or clean a fire 
unless it actually needs it. If there 
is a bed of live coals under the fresh, 
black coal leave it alone. To, shake 
down the fire at night and clean out 
the ashes in the morning is sufScient, 
unless additional heat is required for 
a special purpose. ' 

Care of Furnace Fire. — Keep the 
coal piled up in the center and lower 
at the sides. If the coal banks up at 
the sides, leaving a hole at the heart 
of the fire, it gradually cools and dies. 
Shake down the furnace thoroughly at 
night, remove the ashes, add fresh 
coal, and leave the draught open until 
blue flames are seen darting across the 
coal. This is necessary to avoid gas 
escaping and filling the house. The 
fire will not require additional shaking 
except in the coldest weather. 

Coal for Range and Furnace. — The 
smallest size of coal that the grate 
will adipit will give the most satisfac- 
tory results. By kindling range or 
furnace fires with coke, thus forming 
a bed of coals across the grate, pea 
coal may be burned. This is the 
cheapest fuel and lasts the longest. 
Next to this chestnut coal is the most 
economical. 

To Bank Range and Furnace Fires. 
— Do not bank fires with ashes or cin- 
ders. Use buckwheat or pea coal for 
this purpose, or buy a ton of screen- 
ings. Shake down the fire, fill the fire 
box with fresh coal, allow it to come 
up, and sprinkle on top a layer of 
fine coal or screenings. This banks 
the fire night and day, and gives an 
even, continuous heat. 

Or use the dust and broken coal 
that accumulates in the bottom of the 
coal bin. 

Fuel Economies. — Use the ash pan 
of an old-fashioned base burner in 
which to cook Boston baked beans, 
Indian pudding, and the like. Clean 
out the ash pan and cover the dish 
containing the food with a granite 
iron kettle, or otherwise, so that the 
ashes from above cannot get into it. 
These articles require long, slow cook- 
ing, and this plan saves keeping two 
fires all day. 



1^8 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



Or a fire may be kept in a common 
stove for several hours when required 
for this purpose by lighting the fire 
on one side only and thus saving about 
half the fuel. 

To Burn Old Papers. — Twist and 
roU them up in small rolls and lay 
them lengthwise on the grate. Thus 
they will burn slowly, like logs, with- 
out flaming up. 

To Prevent Clinkers. — Clinkers are 
formed by earthy substances, which 
ordinarily fall through the grate as 
ashes, becoming melted and vitrified 
by excessive heat. Hence, to prevent 
clinkers, control the draught, bank the 
fire, and do not allow it to rage. 

To Remove Clinkers. — If the grate 
and walls of the fire box become cov- 
ered with melted clinkers, throw oyster 
or clam shells on the bed of hot coals 
and allow the fire to go out. This 
will weaken the clinkers so that they 
can be easily removed. Repeat if nec- 
essary. Use 1 or 2 quarts of shells 
for a range, or a peck or half a bushel 
for a furnace. Or sprinkle salt on the 
clinkers to loosen them. 

CLEANING AND FOLISHING STOVES 

Care of Kitchen Bange. — Remove 
cinders and ashes each morning, brush 
out the inside of fire box and flues, 
and brush off the outside with wings 
or a hair brush; wash off the stove, if 
greasy, with soda and water and a 
piece of flannel. Blacken and polish. 

Clean steel fittings from rust with 
sweet oil or kerosene and polish with 
emery. Clean brass fittings with em- 
ery or bath brick by means of flannel, 
and polish with chamois. Clean the 
hearth with hot water and soda by 
means of a flannel cloth. 

Care of Stoves. — The cook stove or 
range may be kept in good order by 
a daily brushing or rubbing and by 
a thorough blacking and polishing 
once a week. 

Cook Stove — To Keep Glean. — Sprin- 
kle a little salt over anything burning 
on the stove to remove the dirt. Have 
at hand small sheets of sandpaper to 
remove whatever adheres. 



To Keep the Hands Clean. — Before 
polishing the stove rub lard under the 
finger nails. 

Dilute the polish in a saucer with 
water or vinegar, and apply with a 
common dishwashing mop. Draw over 
the hand a small paper bag, and pol- 
ish with a flannel or other cloth. 

Or use a polishing mitten, but the 
liquid blacking wiU work through the 
polishing mitten and soil the hands, 
whereas the paper bags can be changed 
as fast as they become soiled. 

If the hands become soiled with 
blacking, first rub them thoroughly 
with lard, then wash with soap and 
water. 

Stove Blacking. — Dissolve J ounce 
of alum in 1 giU of soft water. Add 
6i pounds of plumbago mixed with 13 
ounces of lampblack. Stir vigorously. 
Stir in IJ giUs of molasses, next J bar 
of white soap dissolved in 3 pints of 
water, and lastly 1 ounce of glycerin. 
This is a commercial article which has 
a great reputation. 

Or beat up the whites of 3 eggs and 
mix in J pound of black lead. Dilute 
with sour beer or ale to the consist- 
ency of cream, and boil gently for 15 
or 20 minutes. 

Or mix 8 ounces of copperas, 4 
ounces of bone black, and 4 ounces of 
black lead with water to the consist- 
ency of cream. 

Or melt 1 pound of hard yellow 
soap with a little boiling water, and 
while hot stir in 1 pound of powdered 
soft coal. Cool, and preserve in tight 
fruit jars or wide-mouthed bottles 
for use. 

Or mix 4 ounces of black lead with 
2 tablespoonfuls of vinegar, 1 tea- 
spoonful of sugar, and a piece of yel- 
low soap the size of a butternut. Melt 
the soap with gentle heat and reduce 
while hot to the consistency of cream 
with coffee strained through a cheese 
cloth. Stir in J teaspoonful of alum. 

Or use vinegar instead of water for 
mixing any of the above. The work 
of polishing will not be so hard, and 
the polish will last longer. 

Or mix with oil of turpentine. This, 
prevents and removes rust. 



THE DAY'S ROUTINE 



129 



Or add a little sugar or alum to 
aay of the above; or a little benzine 
or naphtha to help cut the grease. If 
these are added the stove must be pol- 
ished cold. 

To Apply Polish. — Apply stove pol- 
ish in liquid form by softening with 
a little vinegar or turpentine, and 
spread on with a dishwashing mop 
or wide painter's brush. 

Or rub a piece of flannel with wet 
yellow soap. Dip it into dry pow- 
dered blacking and apply. This saves 
friction and makes the labor of polish- 
ing much easier. 

Or, if a stove is much covered with 
grease, mix powdered blacking with 
gasoline and rub it on rapidly with 
flannel. Clean the stove thoroughly 
as you go, as the gasoline evaporates 
quickly. Of course the stove must be 
entirely cold. 

To Polish Stoves. — Polishing cloths 
may be purchased, or a substitute may 
be made from any old glove or mitten 
by sewing to the palm several thick- 
nesses of outing flannel, velveteen, or 
a piece of sheepskin with the wool on. 

Or polish the stove with newspapers. 

Or take a large paper bag, insert 
the hand part way, and crumple up 
the remainder to polish with. 

Or use the paper that electric-light 
globes are cleaned witli. This can be 
bought of any electrical plant, and will 
give a fine polish as well as econo- 
mize blacking. 

Or use a piece of velveteen.' This is 
one of the best of polishing substances, 
and has the advantage of being wash- 
able. 

To Clean Nickel. — Clean the nickel 
or other metal trimmings on stoves 
with whiting. Mix to a thin paste 
with aqua ammonia or water, or both. 
Cover the parts with this and allow it 
to dry. Afterwards rub it ofl' and pol- 
ish with dry flannel or polishing cloth. 

Or apply baking soda diluted to a 
thin paste vrith aqua ammonia. 

Care of New Stoves. — A new stove 
should be heated gradually, and the 
oven door should be left open for half 
a day or more before it is used. If 
a new stove is allowed to become too 



hot there is danger that it may be 
cracked or warped. If an oven is 
overheated the first time it will not 
retain the heat well afterwards. Iron- 
ware of all kinds should first be tem- 
pered by gradual heat. 

Stove Holders. — Pew homemade 
gifts will be more appreciated than 
a general supply of kitchen holders. 
A half dozen is not too many to have 
at hand in the kitchen at all times, 
and two or three times as many 
should be provided, as there will al- 
ways be some in the wash. They can 
be made of odd pieces that would 
otherwise go to waste. Stove holders 
. containing a thin sheet of asbestos 
between two pieces of canvas or other 
cloth are perhaps the best noncon- 
ductors. Thin asbestos cloth comes 
by the yard at a small price,- and a 
single thickness, protected by two 
pieces of cloth, makes a holder that 
is quite fireproof. 

Or, in place of asbestos, use square 
pieces of leather cut from old boot 
tops. 

White duck or canvas is the best 
material, as, if the holders are made 
so that the asbestos is removable, the 
covers can be washed and kept clean. 

Or use outing flannel or other pieces 
of heavy goods. Also 8- or 10-inch 
squares of heavy canvas will be found 
useful in addition to the smaller sizes. 

A large pair of loose mittens of 
canvas or outing flannel lined with 
asbestos will be found very useful to 
take hot dishes out of the oven, and 
for other use about the stove. Fasten 
to these a stout cord or piece of tape 
about 3 feet long, and when much 
cooking is to be done slip one of them 
under the apron band or belt. Thus 
both will be suspended so that they 
will always be at hand. 

Old stocking legs, especially of wool, 
which is a nonconductor, make good 
holders. Fold the legs inwardly three 
times to form a square, stitch across 
it, and also stitch it diagonally in a 
crisscross pattern, an inch or two 
apart, on the sewing machine, to pre- 
vent wrinkling in the wash. Two old 
stockings prepared in this way and 



130 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



stitched together at the sides and ends 
so as to admit of a removable square 
of asbestos between make the best 
kitchen holders. Or they may be cov- 
ered with strong washable material, 
as denim or duck. Attach loops of 
strong tape at one or more corners, 
or sew on brass curtain rings and 
hang them on a nail or hook near the 
stove. 

Or cover the holders with pieces of 
ticking or cretonne or worn-out over- 
alls. Two holders fastened together 
by a piece of tape about 18 inches 
long and hung by the apron belt are 
a great kitchen convenience. 

Uses for Asbestos. — Asbestos is a 
fireproof substance which is found in 
the earth in a natural state. It has a 
short fiber, but whether it is of animal 
or mineral origin is not known. The 
commercial article can be purchased 
in the form of cloth or boards of vary- 
ing degrees of thickness, or mixed with 
cement in strong, smooth plates. As- 
bestos is the best protection possible 
against heat, and has numberless uses 
in the household. A piece of hard, 
smooth asbestos board under the range, 
cook stove, parlor stove, gas stove, or 
small oil stove, is superior to iron or 
zinc because it is durable, easier to 
keep clean, and presents a better ap- 
pearance. The woodwork near stoves 
may be protected by the same mate- 
rial, also the collars above stovepipes 
where they pass through the ceiling 
and side walls. 

Candle lamp shades may be pro- 
tected by a collar or lining of asbes- 
tos ; dinner mats, either square or oval, 
made of two thicknesses of linen, with 
an opening at one end to admit a 
square of asbestos, will prevent the 
hot tea or coffee pot or dishes con- 
taining hot food from injuring the 
tablecloth or the polished surface of 
the table. Holders of washable ma- 
terial containing a removable square 
of asbestos are light, fireproof, and 
convenient, and asbestos mats lined 
with wire have many uses about the 
stove. They may be placed in a hot 
oven to prevent cakes and pies from 
burning on the bottom, and also on 



the top of the stove to prevent the 
contents of kettles and saucepans 
from burning. A small asbestos mat, 
wire lined, with a hole cut through 
the asbestos in the center, but not 
through the wire, will be found useful 
for warming milk and other things in 
cups and small saucepans with round- 
ed bottoms. The heat is applied to 
the bottom instead of the sides, and 
the vessel will not tip over. 

To Clean Grates. — ^When stirring the 
coal or wood in an open grate fire, 
spread a newspaper in front of the 
grate, or clear across the hearth if it 
is a small one, and work while the 
paper burns. The flames will cause 
a rushing draught that will carry the 
dust up the chimney. 

Or, to prevent the dust flying, if 
the fire is out, sprinkle a handful of 
wet tea leaves over the ashes. 

To Clean a Hearth. — Cover grease 
spots on the hearth with hot ashes or 
live coals, or sprinkle fuller's earth 
on the spots. Cover with live coals 
and brush away after the grease has 
been absorbed. 

To Black a Hearth. — Shave J bar 
of yellow soap into 1 pint of boil- 
ing water and stir in J pound of black 
lead. Boil 10 or IS minutes, stirring 
vigorously. Dilute with water if nec- 
essary, and apply with a brush. 

Or beat up black lead with white of 
eggs. Lay on with a brush and polish. 

Care of Matches. — Keep a stock of 
matches on a high and dry shelf in a 
covered earthen jar or tin box with 
a tight lid where they will be out of 
the way of children and safe from 
rats and mice. These animals are fond 
of phosphorus, and will gnaw match 
heads if they can, and often set them 
on fire. Have a covered match safe 
in each room where they are in fre- 
quent use. A match safe fastened to 
a piece of sandpaper will be found a 
great convenience. To hold burnt 
matches, a wineglass suspended with 
a bit of ribbon and hung on the gas 
jet or near the stove will be found 
useful. 

To Clean a Gas Range. — Do not 
black a gas range, but wash the 



THE DAY'S ROUTINE 



131 



greasy parts in a strong solution of 
potash lye or sal soda, afterwards 
thoroughly clean and dry. Do not 
put blacking or anything else on the 
burners, as it is likely to clog them 
and interfere with the flame. 

Carff of a Gas Range. — Keep the 
gas stove clean both inside and out. It 
is not hot enough to burn off or absorb 
vegetable or animal matter. Hence 
it should never be blacked, as the 
blacking is likely to rub off on the 
clothing. As soon as it is dry and 
while still warm rub every portion, 
inside and out, thoroughly with an 
oily cloth. Use kerosene for this pur- 
pose, or a very little lard or suet, but 
olive oil is probably the most desirable. 
Do not wash the stove or apply an 
oily cloth while it is cold or while the 
burners are in use. To do so will 
cause rust, cakes of fat, or disagree- 
able odors when the stove is next 
lighted. 

If the stove is to be detached and 
stored away, it should be thoroughly 
cleaned and given a coat of some rust- 
proof varnish. 

Care of Burners. — Never black 
the top of a perforated or any other 
burner. Clean it with a damp cloth, 
and while warm wipe it off with an 
oily cloth to make the red burned 
appearance less pronounced. If the 
burners are removable boil them from 
time to time in borax water. But 
some burners cannot be removed un- 
less taken apart. When this is done 
take care to get the burners back in 
their right places. Especially the 
giant or large burner must be attached 
to its right key or gas outlet, other- 
wise it will not get the proper flow 
of gas. 

The burners should always be warm 
when washed, and after being dried 
should be replaced on their keys, 
lighted at once, and burned a few 
seconds or until the flame Is clear. If 
particles that have been released in 
the pipe leading to the burner lodge 
in the pipe, tap the pipe leading from 
the key to the burner. This dislodges 
the particles and allows the gas to 
carry them on and out through the 



burner. When sweeping cover the 
range well, or else particles of dust 
may lodge on or in the burners, and 
be carried into the air mixture, 
whence they produce flames full of 
red specks. 

Care of Air Kixers. — Just back of 
the keys in every gas range is a, round 
device with from 3 to S slots or open- 
ings. This regulates the air supply. 
These may be called the lungs of the 
gas stove, since through them tlie burn- 
ers take in the air necessary to insure 
perfect combustion. Hence these parts 
must be kept free and clear of any 
accumulation of dirt, or the flame 
will have a white luminous tip, which 
will smut pans and lessen the amount 
of heat. Too much care cannot be 
taken to keep these air spaces clear 
and free. They must be frequently 
wiped out. 

Care of the Oven. — rGreat care must 
be taken to keep the racks of the oven 
clean, especially if they are of sheet 
iron or heavy wire, since they may be 
utilized in liiany ways. Remove them 
occasionally and scrub them with pot- 
ash lye or strong solution of sal soda 
by means of a stiff fiber brush. Rinse 
with boiling water and dry thoroughly 
before returning to the oven. Never 
broil anything on the top of the stove, 
as the unconsumed food and grease 
will drop down and clog up the burn- 
ers, and can only be removed by boil- 
ing in strong lye. 

To clean oven doors lined with alu- 
minum, mix whiting and potash or sal 
soda with water and scrub by means 
of a stiff brush. After baking or 
roasting, wipe out the oven while still 
warm. Use an old newspaper for this 
purpose. This will save much future 
trouble in scrubbing. 

To wash the drip trays, take them 
out while warm, fill them with boiling 
water in which a little caustic potash 
or sal soda is dissolved, and scrub 
with a coarse fiber brush. 

To kill the odors of cooking, put a 
few pieces of charcoal tied with a 
piece of white cheese cloth in cabbage, 
onions, or similar dishes. This will be 
a great help in reducing the odor. 



132 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



To Light Gas Stoves. — In lighting 
the top burners do not be in a hurry. 
Locate the burner you wish to use, 
and with your eye follow the pipe 
from the burner down to the keys in 
front of the rangp, so as to be sure 
you turn the proper key. When you 
turn on the gas count five; meanwhile 
strike a match. After the fifth count 
apply the match to the back of the 
burner, bringing it forward over the 
burner. TMs method of lighting is 
almost sure to prevent the snapping 
sound sometimes heard. 

If spurts of flame are not seen at 
all the holes in a burner, a slight 
breath directed across the flames will 
cause all the jets to light. 

To prevent snapping and burning 
of gas in the air mixers, loosen the 
front of the air mixer just behind the 
key, and reduce the opening until the 
burner can be lighted. There should 
never be a, white tip on the flame. 

Waste of Gas. — Turn down the 
burner as soon as the food begins to 
cook. When water bubbles the burner 
should be turned down. It is a com- 
mon mistake to suppose that when the 
water in a dish or vessel reaches the 
boiling point it will continue to get 
hotter if the gas is left turned on full. 
In fact, water turns to steam at the 
boiling point, 212° F., and does not 
get any hotter, but merely evaporates 
more quickly; and there is not only 
waste of gas but additional trouble in 
replacing the water lost by evapora- 
tion, as well as the liability of food 
burning or cooking into a sticky mass 
on the bottom of the saucepan. When 
food begins to cook, the valve or cock 
can be turned off two thirds. Do not 
turn on the gas and go hunting for 
a match in another room. Do not 
light the burners, and then stop to 
prepare vegetables or hunt up sauce- 
pans. Light the burner just as you 
reach the range, saucepan in hand, 
ready to begin cooking, and turn off 
the gas as soon as the saucepan is 
removed. 

Obtain a set of two semicircular or 
three triangular saucepans that can 
be placed on a single burner at the 



same time. They economize space and 
gas, as two or three vegetables can be 
cooked at the same time over the same 
burner. 

Ironing with Gas. — Get a strip of 
metal large enough to hold four or 
five flatirons, and heat the irons on 
this. A single gas burner will heat 
the metal from end to end, and thus 
do the work of three or four. The 
same strip of metal can be used for 
making griddlecakes. Turn over the 
irons a metal pan so as to save the 
top heat, and turn the gas down low. 
With care, four or five flats can be 
kept hot at a cost of about ten cents 
for an ordinary ironing. Do not put 
flatirons directly over a gas flame, as 
the watery vapor from the flame will 
rust and consequently roughen them. 

Or get a flatiron heated with gas, 
which can be connected with rubber 
gas tubing. Several of these irons 
are on the market, and with proper 
adjustment will give satisfactory re- 
sults. 

Broiling with Gas. — To broil with 
gas, light the burner about ten min- 
utes before the meat is put into the 
broiling compartment. Take off the 
excess of fat, wipe the meat with a 
damp cloth, slice the gristle to keep 
the edge from curling, and lay the meat 
on the gridiron as close to the fire as 
possible. Always leave the broHing- 
oven door open to prevent the meat 
from taking fire. 

Put a little water in the drip pan to 
catch and cool the melted fat. 

DISHWASHING 

There is no single operation of 
housekeeping in which system will save 
so much time as in dishwashing. Sys- 
tem is only force of habit and soon 
becomes second nature. The follow- 
ing suggestions are condensed from 
the practical experience of a large 
number of intelligent housewives. 

(1) Wash the cooking utensils as 
soon as the food is emptied out of 
them and before it is placed on the 
table. Or, if this is not convenient, 
fill them with hot water and leave 



THE DAY'S ROUTINE 



133 



them to soak. (2) After the meal is 
finished, and before clearing the table, 
prepare a place in the kitchen to re- 
ceive the soiled dishes. (3) Scrape off 
all bits of food into one dish, using 
preferably a good plate scraper of 
sheet rubber. This will remove all 
food and grease, and will not injure 
the most delicate china. If greasy 
dishes are not scraped, the dishwater 
will become too foul, and it will be 
difficult to wash or wipe the dishes 
clean. Greasy dishwater also makes 
the sink difficult to clean, and tends 
to stop up the spout. If a little lye 
is scattered over very greasy dishes, it 
will cleanse them readily by partially 
transforming the grease into soap. Be 
careful not to use lye strong enough 
to injure the skin. (4) Sort the dishes 
and stack them up in an orderly way, 
with the smallest articles on top ; place 
the glass, small china articles, silver, 
and other delicate pieces together; 
next, cups and saucers, sauce dishes 
and the like, and finally plates, plat- 
ters, and larger objects. (5) Load 
these lots on a large tray in the above 
order, carry them to the kitchen, and 
keep them separate until they are 
washed, wiped, and put away. This 
method saves frequent steps to the 
kitchen as well as confusion in sorting 
them there. Lay a newspaper or piece 
of wrapping paper over a large pan, 
scrape all the garbage into that, and 
if possible burn it in the range. Or 
use a small garbage burner. Or ob- 
tain a good, odorless garbage can that 
can be thoroughly disinfected and 
cleaned. Keep at hand a grease kettle 
in which to preserve scraps of grease. 
Sprinkle a little lye on the most greasy 
cooking utensils, as skillets, iron fet- 
tles, and platters, and rinse them into 
the grease pot. The lye will keep the 
grease sweet and assist in the process 
of soap making. Save the tea leaves 
to be used for sweeping. (6) Next 
prepare a suds with soap or any wash- 
ing compound. Borax is good. Wash 
first in hot suds the silver, glass, and 
delicate china, using a swab with a, 
long wooden handle. Wipe the silver 
as soon as it is washed. Put the glass 



and china in a wire basket, and pour 
hot water over them. (7) Place the 
second lot of dishes — cups and saucers, 
vegetable and side dishes — in the dish- 
water, and allow them to soak while 
the first lot are being wiped. (8) Add 
hot water if necessary, wash the sec- 
ond lot of dishes, set them in the 
drainer, and place the third lot in the 
suds, or make new suds for it if neces- 
sary. (9) Next make fresh suds for 
milk pans, if any, and other tinware. 
Finally, wash the ironware — roaster, 
gridiron, pots, and kettles. Use for 
this purpose a little lye and scrape 
with a stiff fiber brush. 

Conveniences for Dishwashini:. — 
The process of dishwashing will be 
much simplified if a large bench or 
table can be arranged to stand beside 
the sink, with the china cabinet or 
pantry for the ordinary tablewkre 
placed just above it.' In many mod- 
ern kitchens (especially in city apart- 
ment houses) an arrangement which is 
ideal allows the dishwasher to wash, 
dry, and put away most of the dishes 
without leaving the sink. The time 
and steps lost in walking from the 
sink to the table, even if but a few 
feet distant, and thence to pantry or 
closet, is a waste of energy that can 
never be justified. If, for any reason, 
a permanent bench or table cannot be 
placed near the sink, get a movable 
folding table like a sewing table, or 
a shelf arranged to let down against 
the wall. A small shelf or cupboard 
above the sink to contain soap, borax, 
washing powder, and various utensils 
will be found convenient. 

The sink should be placed high 
enough so that the dishes may be 
washed without stooping. The top of 
the adjacent table should be slightly 
above and overlapping the sink, and 
with just enough slope to let the wa- 
ter drain back into it. Or a small 
cleat may be tacked on the edges of 
the table, front and back, projecting 
about a quarter of an inch, and the 
whole covered with oilcloth. This will 
let the drainage water flow back into 
the sink, and the top of the table can 
be easily kept both dry and clean. 



134 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



Provide a strong stool, high enough 
to allow sitting down at the sink to 
pare vegetables and for other pur- 
poses. 




"Air ts Admitted to Every Part." 

Convenient utensils are: a swab 
made by fastening strips of linen or 
cotton to the end of a wooden handle; 
a small brush, like a nail brush, and 
a larger scrubbing brush for cleaning 
vegetables; a soap shaker, which may 
be homemade; a pot scraper, which 
may be an ordinary clam shell; and a 
wire dish drainer, either bought or 
homemade, which may be hung on a 
neighboring wall. A closet under the 
sink is not advisable. It is better to 
have the plumbing exposed and paint 
"the under portion of the sink white, 
or cover it with white enamel. This 
may be done by any member of the 
family. The wall behind the sink 
should be protected by zinc, and if 
the table is covered with zinc instead 
of oilcloth, so much the better. 

Or a curtain of any soft, cheap ma- 
terial may be hung against the wall 
so that the lower edge will just reach 
the table top. This should be of 
washable material so that it can be 
changed weekly. A line of strong cord 
or picture wire should be strung near 
at hand to hold the dishcloths and 
towels. The garbage can may be 
placed under the sink or to the right. 



A three-cornered wire drainer, fas- 
tened in the corner of the sink, will 
be found convenient' to receive vege- 
table parings, and also to strain the 
dishwater. A small shovel of cast 
iron, similar in shape to a fire shovel, 
will be a. great convenience to lift 
scraps from the sink to the garbage 
can. 

Have one or more wood fiber brushes 
to clean dishes, kettles, and pans. The 
fibers are stiffer than bristles, and 
hence do more effective work. A whisk 
or two will clean an empty potato or 
gravy kettle as soon as the vessel is 
emptied. A convenient size for brush 
is 2 by 2i inches. 

■Washboard. — Hang beside the sink 
■ a small washboard. Use this to rub 
out dishcloths, and to keep towels 
sweet and clean. 

Hinged Table. — A hinged table or 
bench that can be let down, and lifted 
up against the wall when not in use, 
is often convenient in a small kitchen, 
or where an ordinary table would be 
in the way. Have this bench or table 
just high enough to let down over 
one's lap when sitting in a chair. A 
great deal of work can thus be done 
sitting. 

Or use an ordinary collapsible sew- 
ing table for this purpose. 

Dishwashing Machines. — Many un- 
successful attempts were made in the 
past to invent dishwashing machines. 
Some of these took more time to clean 
than was required to wash the dishes 
themselves. Good ones can now be 
purchased, however, that will -wash 
the dishes not only quicker, but bet- 
ter, than by the old-fashioned way. 
These machines are simple in construc- 
tion, are easily cleaned, and, if given 
proper attention, will last many years. 
They are constructed with a galvan- 
ized iron cylinder, which is to be half 
filled with water containing any good 
washing compound and brought to a 
boil. The dishes are put in a cylin- 
drical basket or tray, the plates and 
platters placed on edge and held, 
by brackets. Saucers, cups, and side 
dishes are placed beside them, the 
basket is lowered into the cylinder, 



THE DAY'S ROUTINE 



135 



revolved two or three times by means 
of a. crank, reversed, and the dishes 
are deansed. The tray is then taken 
out, and if the dishes are scalded 
with boiling water, very little wiping 
will be required. When we reflect 
that in many families of average size 
upward of three hours a day are de- 
voted to washing dishes, or that ap- 
proximately one fifth of the waking 
moments of thousands of intelligent 
women are occupied in this manner, 
we cannot but earnestly urge the aver- 
age family to make whatever sacrifices 
may be necessary to provide the house- 
wife with this and all other improved 
labor-saving devices. This, we think, 
will also be found a. key to the solu- 
tion of the much-vexed problem of 
domestic help. 

Dish Draining. — If the table be cov- 
ered with oilcloth or zinc, the edges 
raised, and the whole slightly tilted 
so as to empty into the sink, a wire 
basket may be the only dish strainer 
required. A homemade article may 
be prepared from an ordinary soap 
box by lining the bottom with zinc. 
A cleat may be tacked on the bottom 
at one end to tilt the box, and by 
boring auger holes a slit may be made 
at the opposite end to allow the water 
to escape. Place this dish drainer on 
the table in such a way that the open 
end will proj ect over the sink. Through 
holes bored at intervals in the sides 
of the box thrust old broomsticks or 
other rods to hold plates and saucers 
upright to dry. Cover the box with 
oUcloth or stain it to match the kitchen 
woodwork. 

Or an old dish pan may be used 
by perforating the bottom with holes 
by means of a hammer and round wire 
nails. Place the draining basket, pan, 
or box to the left of the dish pan to 
avoid unnecessary handling. If the 
handles are front and back, as you 
face the dish pan you will have fewer 
pieces of nicked china. If lye is used, 
and the dishwater is fairly hot and 
soapy, dishes rinsed with cold water 
will dry in the rack bright and shiny 
and not require wiping. 

Or, if thoroughly rinsed viath hot 



water, they may be allowed to dry in 
the same way. 

Or, if the table is not wanted for 
immediate use, lay a large dry cloth 
over it, put the dishes on this to drain, 
and throw another cloth over the whole 
to keep off dust and flies. This is a 
rough-and-ready method for drying 
dishes and saving the labor of wiping 
and putting them away. 

Or a drainer may be made of an 
old dripping pan or roaster by clean- 
ing it thoroughly and covering it in- 
side and out with a coat of enamel 
paint. Make a hole in one end to 
allow the water to drain into the sink, 
and place in it a wire dish strainer. 

Milk Dishes. — ^Milk pans, pitchers, 
and tumblers which have contained 
milk, and dishes in which milk or milk 
puddings have been cooked, should be 
first rinsed with cold water. Hot wa- 
ter converts the casein of the milk 
into a kind of cement or glue which 
is hard to remove. 

Milk Cans. — These should be fiUed 
with cold water and allowed to soak. 
Put them away from the stove. Rins- 
ing with cold water will assist in 
keeping the milk dishes sweet and pre- 
vent the milk from souring. After- 
wards pour out the cold water, wash 
in hot soapsuds or borax water, rinse, 
and scald. 

To Remove Odors. — ^Dishes which 
have been used to cook fish or cab- 
bage, or anything else having a dis- 
agreeable odor, may be cleansed by 
first washing them and then rinsing 
them with powdered charcoal. 

Or set the dish after washing in a 
warm oven for ten or fifteen minutes. 

Or fill the dish with boiling water 
and drop into it a piece of charcoal. 
A lump of charcoal left in a closed 
bottle or jar will keep it from be- 
coming musty. The water in which 
cabbage has been cooked should not 
be poured down the sink, or, if this 
must be done, the sink should be 
rinsed with water containing powdered 
charcoal or a little chloride of lime. 

A new wooden vessel, as a pail, a 
keg, or a churn, will often communi- 
cate a woody taste to food, whether 



136 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



solid or liquid. To prevent this, scald 
the vessel with boiling water and let 
it stand to soak until cold. Then 
wash well with a strong lye of wood 
ashes or caustic potash containing a 
small quantity of slacked lime. Re- 
peat if necessary. Scald with hot wa- 
ter, and rinse with cold. 

Sleeve Protectors. — An old pair of 
stockings may be converted into use- 
ful sleeve protectors by cutting off the 
feet and hemming the cut edge. These 
may be drawn over the sleeves of a 
clean gown if necessary when washing 
dishes. They are also useful in other 
kinds of housework. 

Dishcloths. — Unravel coarse manila 
rope and use the loose mass as a dish- 
cloth. This is especially useful for 
cleansing cooking, tin and ironware 
utensils; also for scouring and scrub- 
bing table shelves, paint, sinlss, and 
other rough surfaces. 

Or save cloth flour sacks, sugar, salt, 
and corn-meal bags, and use them as 
dishcloths, dusters, etc. They keep 
white and last longer than ordinary 
towel stuff. To wash flour sacks, turn 
them wrong side out and dust the 
flour from them; afterwards wash in 
cold water. Hot water will make a 
paste of the flour. 

Or use cheese cloth for both wash- 
ing and wiping dishes. This is better 
than crash, especially for drying silver ' 
and glassware. 

Or use scrim or cotton imderwear 
crocheted about the edge, or folded 
and hemmed double. 

Or make dishcloths of worn dish 
towels. 

Or use the fiber of the so-called 
dishrag gourd, the seeds of which 
may be obtained from any seedman. 

Or try grass toweling. This is, of 
course, fibrous material, which is eas- 
ily rinsed. 

Best of all for many purposes is a 
small dish mop which permits of the 
use of boiling hot water and strong 
washing powder. With a little prac- 
tice, the hands may be kept out of the 
water altogether. 

Dishcloths — Care of. — The dishcloth 
must be kept clean. A greasy dish- 



cloth affords a breeding place for the 
germs of diphtheria, typhoid, and 
other filth diseases. Wash in soapsuds 
and rinse in cold water, or add lemon 
juice and salt to the water, or a tea- 
spoonful of kerosene. 

Dish Towels. — Any of the above 
fabrics recommended for dishcloths 
may be used for dish toweling. Large 
flour sacks are the right size. So are 
old pillow slips cut in halves, or dish 
towels may be made from old sheets. 

Or cut up old garments of outing 
flannel, which has great absorbent 
qualities, to the size of dish towels. 
Hem, and add tape hangers. 

Or make hangers of lamp wicking. 

Or use blue and white striped tick- 
ing from old pillow cases. 

Dish Towels — Care of. — Two or 
three dish towels shoiild be used at 
each meal, and these should be washed 
in soap and water, rinsed and hung 
to dry, rather than allowed to dry 
when soiled with more or less greasy 
dishwater. 

Hanging Towels. — Roller towels are 
perhaps most convenient and satisfac- 
tory for kitchen use, but if these are 
not used, sew tape hangers at each 




" The Best Towel Racks." 

end of common towels so that they 
can be turned about when one end 
is soiled and worn equally at both 
ends. 

Or make hangers of smaU lamp 
wicks, one at each end, turning the 
ends in with the hem. Keep a stock 
of half a dozen or more dish towels 
and hangmg towels, and mark them 



THE DAY'S ROUTINE 



137 



1, 2, 3, 4, S, 6. This makes it easy to 
account for them and to use them in 
rotation. 

CASE OF KITCHEN WABES 

To Keep Ironware Clean. — Rub 
soap thickly on the bottom of an iron 
kettle or saucepan which is placed di- 
rectly over the fire of a coal range; 
this will prevent the soot burning on. 
Lard or other grease may also be 
used, but is not so good. 

To Clean Cooking Utensils. — After 
emptying food from cooking utensils, 
do not take them off the range dry. 
Pour a little water in them, cover 
closely, and set them back on the 
range. If a steady fire is kept the 
steam will loosen any fragments of 
food so that the utensils will be very 
easily washed. , 

Or, if possible, take them to the 
sink and wash them immediately be- 
fore placing the food on the table. 
They will never be easier to clean than 
now, and thus the most difficult part 
of dishwashing will, be out of the way 
before the table dishes are brought in. 
Keep a can of lye dissolved in water, 
and if the article is very greasy rinse 
with this and pour into the soap kettle. 

If iron kettles or other metal cook- 
ing utensils have become coated with 
soot, boil them in water with a gen- 
erous quantity of potash or soda lye. 
Boil vigorously for a time, and the 
soot will become so loosened that it 
may be removed by wiping off with 
soft paper. Dip them in hot water to 
rinse, before touching them with the 
hands, as the lye wiU injure the 
skin. 

Or keep at hand a piece of coarse 
sandpaper and with it rub kettles in 
which food is burned on. Or use a 
clam shell as a scraper. This is better 
and more convenient than a knife. 
Or scour with finely sifted coal ashes 
and a flannel rag, 

A frying pan should not be scraped. 
FUl it with cold water containing a 
teaspoonfuL of sal soda, and let it 
stand until the dishes are washed for 
the next meal. 



To Kemove Unst from Ironware. — 
Cover the rusted article with grease, 
and set it in a hot oven for half an 
hour. Afterwards wash with soap and 
water, and the rust will be removed. 

Copper Ware. — Copper kettles should 
not be used unless they are perfectly 
bright and clean. To polish copper 
ware, apply hot salt and vinegar, and 
scrub with a stiff nail brush. Or rub 
with flannel dipped in hot water and 
sprinkled thickly with powdered borax. 

Or dip a cloth in kerosene or gaso- 
line, sprinkle it with a mixture of bath 
brick or ground pumice, and polish. 
For large copper boilers or other uten- 
sils which are not used for the prepa- 
ration of food, apply with a damp 
cloth or nail brush a saturated solu- 
tion of oxalic acid in its own bulk of 
water, and scour with bath brick and 
pumice stone softened with olive oil. 
It must, of course, be borne in mind 
that oxalic acid is a deadly poison. 

Enameled Ware. — Scraping ruins 
enameled ware. Utensils of this ware 
placed directly over the flame of a 
coal range should be protected by 
rubbing the bottoms thickly with soap. 
Any soot which burns on may then be 
removed by soap and water. If food 
burns in any enameled-ware utensils, 
put into them a teaspoonful of sal 
soda or caustic lye to a quart of wa- 
ter and boil for fifteen minutes. This 
wiU soften the burned food so that it 
can be removed without scraping. If 
not quite clean, scour with fine sand 
soap. For discolored saucepans boil 
a little chloride of lime in the water. 
Or boil in them a strong solution of 
baking soda. 

Various Utensils. — After using the 
egg beater rinse it in cold water be- 
fore it gets time to dry. 

Before using the food chopper, run 
a piece of suet through it, and follow 
with another piece after the food has 
been chopped. This will keep it clean 
and in good condition. 

Run rice or bread crumbs through 
the spice mill after grinding orange 
or lemon peel, or the coffee mill may 
be used for this purpose and cleaned 
in the same way. 



138 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



Dip the colander, sieve, or grater in 
a pan of water to prevent drying, and 
afterwards clean with a stiff vegetable 
brush. Rinse and dry. 

Fur on Kettles. — To prevent fur 
from gathering on the inside of a tea- 
kettle, put an oyster shell or piece of 
marble inside. Change this occasion- 
ally. 

To remove this furry deposit from 
heavy iron kettles, fill with water, add 
a large spoonful of sal ammoniac, and 
bring to a boil. Empty the kettle 
and let it stand over the fire until 
very hot, when the fur will peel off. 
Afterwards fill with water containing 
sal soda, boil, and rinse. 

The furry deposit may also be dis- ' 
solved in a weak solution of muriatic 
or acetic acid, but it must be remem- 
bered that these are deadly poisons. 
Immediately fill the kettle with water, 
add 2 to 4 ounces of hyposulphide of 
soda or baking soda, and boil. Let 
this stand in the kettle for two or 
three days, and afterwards rinse with 
boiling water. 

Teakettle. — Put an oyster shell in 
the teakettle to prevent Its becoming 
incrusted with lime. Polish occasion- 
ally with a woolen rag moistened with 
kerosene. 

Tinware. — To cleanse tinware mois- 
ten either brick dust or whiting with 
aqua ammonia, kerosene, or washing 
soda. Care must be taken not to use 
lye in cleaning tins, as it will injure 
them. 

To Prevent Kust on Tin-ware. — 
After washing and wiping tinware, 
place it on the back of the range or 
other warm placfe until it is thorough- 
ly dry. To protect new tinware rub 
lard over every part of the tin and 
set it in the oven until it is heated 
through. This makes the tin perma- 
nently rust proof. 

To Prepare New Tins. — New tins 
are often covered with rosin or other 
substances which should be removed 
before using. Fill with boiling water 
and add sal soda or aqua ammonia at 
the rate of a tablespoonful to each 
quart of water. Boil and afterwards 
scour. 



To Wash Tinware. — Fill greasy tins 
with water, add a tablespoonful of 
sal soda, and place on the back part 
of the range. Or use hot water con- 
taining a teaspoonful of aqua am- 
monia. 

To Scour Tins. — Use sifted coal 
ashes moistened with kerosene. Or 
use whiting with kerosene. Or fine 
sand, or bath brick, followed by whit- 
ing. Or polish with brown paper mois- 
tened in vinegar. Damp flannel or dry 
chamois may be used for polishing tin- 
ware. Afterwards wash in soapsuds, 
rinse, and dry. 

To Clean Coffeepots. — Rub salt on 
the inside of u. coffeepot to remove 
coffee and egg. Rinse quicUy and 
thoroughly. 

To Clean Wash Boilers. — If rusty, 
grease with lard and wash off with 
sweet milk. Dry thoroughly before 
storing away. 

To Clean Earthenware. — To clean 
earthenware articles, as pots or jars, 
yellow-ware bowls, pie plates, etc., put 
them in a kettle with cold water, ashes, 
and sal soda, bring to a boil, and 
after boiling let them stand twenty- 
four hours in the lye. 

Or fill the vessels with hot lime wa- 
ter and let them stand twenty-four 
hours. 

Or scour, rinse, and wash with soap- 
suds. Afterwards scour with charcoal 
powder and fill with water containing 
lumps of charcoal. This will remove 
all lingering odors. 

To Repair Cracked Articles. — If 
earthenware or china articles begin to 
crack, put in them a tablespoonful of 
sugar and half a tumberful of water, 
and set over a brisk fire. Paint the 
inside of the vessel, especially the 
cracks, with the melted sugar. The 
sirup will enter the cracks and act as 
a cement. This can be used for pie 
plates and other earthenware utensils 
used in cooking. 

Earthenware baking dishes in which 
food is burned on should not be 
scraped. Put in the vessel a little 
ashes or borax or baking soda, and 
fill with cold water. Set on the stove 
and raise slowly to a boil. Set aside 



THE DAY'S ROUTINE 



1391 



to cool, and wash with hot soapsuds 
and a small stiff brush. Scald and 
wipe dry. 

To remove brown stains from cus- 
tard cups, pie plates, and the like, use 
dry whiting applied with a damp flan- 
nel, or bath brick, scouring sand, or 
pumice. A piece of zinc shaped like 
the corner of a square tin is a great 
convenience in cleaning the corners of 
baking dishes and similar utensils. 
Punch a hole in it and hang it on a 
neighboring wall. 

Tea and Coffee Pots. — Metal tea 
and coffee pots, if allowed to. stand 
for a time, often get a musty odor. 
To prevent this, put a lump of dry 
sugar in them before putting them 
away. This absorbs the dampness 
which produces must. To clean and 
brighten the inside of these articles, 
fill with water and ^dd a piece of 
hard soap. Boil for half an hour. 

Or rub on a little salt and immedi- 
ately rinse thoroughly. 

Kettle Lids. — ^When these lose their 
handles, substitute a small block of 
wood by driving a screw through a 
tin into the lid from beneath. 

Wooden Ware. — Do not wash the 
bread board, wooden bread platter, or 
roUing-pin in hot water. Wash with 
warm soapsuds and rinse in clean cold 
water. 

Copper Ware. — Copper ware was 
formerly quite generally used for 
cooking utensils, and especially for 
large kettles, because of its durability. 
This ware is now being largely re- 
placed by aluminum ware, which is 
equally durable, much lighter, and 
free from danger. 

If copper- ware utensils are used it 
must be borne in mind that they are 
acted upon by moisture and by the 
fatty acids contained in fats and oils, 
the result being a carbonate of cop- 
per, and also by acetic acid contained 
in vinegar, the result being acetate of 
copper or verdigris. Both of these 
are deadly poisons, hence when copper 
vessels are used to cook food or for 
other purposes they should be imme- 
diately emptied and cleaned. Wipe 
them dry and keep in a dry place. 



They should be again cleaned before 
they are used, by scrubbing with hot 
salt and vinegar, and afterwards scald- 
ing with boiling water. 

Or use hot buttermilk and salt for 
this purpose. 

To Clean Japanned Ware. — Trays 
and other articles of japanned ware 
are quite commonly used, as they are 
light, cheap, and convenient. They 
must not be washed in hot water, 
strong suds, or water containing free 
alkali in any form, as sal soda, caustic 
lye, and the like, or with washing pow- 
ders concerning which we know little. 
These take off the lacquer and may 
cause the ware to chip and scale. 
Wash them with a sponge or soft 
cloth in suds made of hard white or 
other neutral soap and cold or warm 
water. Afterwards wipe dry and 
sprinkle with flour. Polish with a dry 
cloth or chamois skin. Do not let 
them stand to drain dry or to dry by 
evaporation, as they may be stained. 
Never put hot articles on them. 

To remove the white marks left by 
heat or water stains, apply sweet oil 
with a flannel cloth or sponge and 
afterwards rub with alcohol. 

CASE OF GLASSWABE AND 
CTTT GLASS 

To Wash Glassware. — Glass is a 
very poor conductor of heat, and more 
valuable glass articles are broken by 
hot water, perhaps, than in any other 
way. To prevent this various precau- 
tions may be used. Place the glass on 
a steel knife blade, or put a silver 
spoon inside. The most delicate glass- 
ware can be washed in hot water if 
slipped in edgewise, outside or con- 
cave side first, and quickly and com- 
pletely immersed. Once make this a 
rule, and it soon becomes a matter of 
habit. 

Or first immerse the glassware in 
lukewarm water and increase the tem- 
perature by adding hot water grad- 
ually. 

Or use tepid water with soda, or 
clear cold water. 

Chamois may be used to dry glass- 



140 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



ware, or any cloth, such as scrim, 
which does not have a nap. 

Many persons prefer to wash glass- 
ware in hot soapsuds. 

Glassware which has been used for 
milk should be first rinsed in cold wa- 
ter, as hot water causes the milk to 
adhere and gives the glass a cloudy 
appearance. 

Cut Glass. — Wash cut-glass articles, 
one piece at a time, in warm suds 
made of castile or other fine white 
soap, and rinse in warm water con- 
taining a few drops of aqua ammonia. 
Save old silk handkerchiefs or other 
pieces of white wash silk to dry cut 
glass, or use a soft Unen towel. Dry 
without draining. Polish with a soft- 
haired brush, such as is used by jew- 
elers. This will penetrate every part 
of the pattern. A stiU more bril- 
liant result can be produced by dust- 
ing the article while wet with jew- 
eler's sawdust. This can be brushed 
off when dry and used repeatedly. 
It may be obtained of any jew- 
eler. 

To Clean Bottles. — Various sub- 
stances and a number of ingenious 
methods are employed to ,clean water 
bottles, wine decanters, milk bottles, 
and medicine bottles, the inside of 
which cannot be reached by ordinary 
methods. Among these are heavy ar- 
ticles as tacks and shot, or lighter 
ones, as crushed eggshells, raw pota- 
toes chopped fine, bits of cloth or 
paper to dislodge dirt and for me- 
chanical cleansing. Also lye and vari- 
ous acids, as lemon juice, sour milk, 
and dilute hydrochloric acid. 

For coarse and heavy articles, like 
glass milk bottles and fruit jars, use 
a handful of carpet tacks or common 
shot. Fill the jar or bottle half full 
of soapsuds, add the tacks or shot, and 
shake well. If tacks are used their 
sharp edges will scrape off the dirt, 
but will also scratch the bottle. Hence 
they are not suitable for wine or vine- 
gar cruets, whether of plain or cut 
glass. If shot is used care must be 
taken that none of them are suffered 
to remain in the cruets, or in bottles 
used to contain any. acid, as the action 



of acid upon lead produces a deadly 
poison. 

Or use one tablespoonful of crushed 
eggshells in the same manner. If the 
bottle is greasy wash with warm water 
and a little soda, or run a raw potato 
through the meat chopper, put it in a 
bottle of warm water, and shake until 
clean. This is one of the most effective 
cleansers knovra. 

Or cut into fine pieces white or 
brown paper or blotting paper and 
use with warm soapsuds. Or use a 
swab of cotton at the end of a long 
stick or wire. 

To Clean with Lye. — Clean medicine 
bottles, vinegar cruets, fruit j ars, milk 
bottles, and all but the most delicate 
glassware by putting in each a table- 
spoonful of wood or coal ashes. Im- 
merse them in cold water, and gradu- 
ally heat the water until it boils. 
Afterwards wash in soapsuds, and 
rinse in clear water. 

Or use a tablespoonful of dissolved 
potash, or soda lye. 

To Clean Cut Glass and Fine Glass- 
ware. — Cut glass and very fine glaiss 
water bottles, decanters, and vases 
may be cleaned by first placing the 
decanter on a steel knife blade, or 
dropping into it a piece of silver, and 
then pouring into it equal quantities 
of hot vinegar and salt. When the 
decanter has become warm put in the 
stopper and shake thoroughly. 

Or put in two tablespoonfuls of 
vinegar and a tablespoonful of baking 
soda. This wiU effervesce vigorously. 
Hold the article over the sink, but do 
not put in the cork, or the vessel may 
burst. 

Or fill with buttermilk, let stand 
forty-eight hours, and wash in soap- 
suds. 

Or rinse with a weak solution of 
muriatic acid. 

To Clean Vases. — When the inside 
of a glass or other delicate vase be- 
comes discolored and stained from 
flower stems, put a little water into 
the vase and add several slices of 
lemon, including the rind. Let stand 
a day or two. Rinse vrith clear water. 

To Sweeten Ilnsty Bottles. — Rinse 



THE DAY'S ROUTINE 



141 



with water containing one or two 
teaspoonfuls of powdered charcoal, 
or rinse with a dilute solution of 
sulphuric acid at the rate of about 
two ounces of acid to a pint of 
water. 

To Wipe Glass. — Glassware should 
be wiped dry as soon as it is lifted 
from the water without waiting for it 
to drain. For glassware use scrim or 
towels which have no lint. 

Or rinse the articles with cold water 
and allow them to dry without wiping. 
They will be much clearer than if 
wiped with a cloth. 

To Polish Glassware. — Save all tis- 
sue paper to polish glassware. Or 
save scraps of chamois. Cut these 
into inch squares and string on twine 
with a, darning needle as beads are 
strung. Use this to polish glassware. 

STEEL EKIVES AND FOBES 

Carving knives and forlis, steel-blade 
knives used for roasts and game, 
and kitchen knives require special care 
to keep them in good order. Wrap 
the best knives and forks in cotton 
batting or strips of cotton flannel or 
outing flannel. Each dozen of knives 
and forks may be rolled up in a sepa- 
rate strip, or pockets may be made 
for them of suitable material in which 
they may be slipped and put away out 
of the reach of dampness. 

To prevent rust when not in use rub 
the steel with sweet oil or olive oil. 
Dampen a cloth with the oil and wipe 
them lightly so as to give them a thin 
coating before putting away. Or put 
powdered quicklime in a small cheese- 
cloth bag and dust steel knives and 
forks with this before they are wrapped 
up and put away. 

Or keep in the pantry a deep box 
or earthen jar containing fine, dry 
sand and plunge the blades into this 
when not in use. This will prevent 
rust and all necessity of scouring. 

To Wash. — Steel knives and forks 
should never be allowed to stand long 
before cleaning, but should be washed 
as soon as possible after being used. 
The fatty acids contained in grease. 



and the fruit acids contained in salad 
dressings, vinegar, tarts, etc., will etch 
and stain the metal until they are re- 
moved. Collect the steel knives and 
forks as soon as the dishes are cleared 
away and soak them in a vessel of hot 
water. Wash in hot suds and water 
and then polish. 

To Scour. — Brick dust, pumice stone, 
rotten stone, sifted wood or coal ashes, 
baking soda, and bath brick are all 
recommended for cleaning steel knives. 

Make a bag of two pieces of old 
carpet, one 6 inches square and the 
other about 3 inches longer. Place the 
faces together and bind the edges with 
cloth or tape, leaving one end open 
with a 2-inch flap to fold over and 
fasten with a button. FiU this bag 
one fourth full of brick dust, shake 
well, and polish the knives in this. 
They will thus be cleaned on both 
sides at once. 

Or cut a raw potato in half and 
dip in brick dust or other cleanser, 
and with it rub the knives and forks. 

Or rub with a cloth moistened 
with kerosene and dipped in the dry 
cleanser. 

Or use the same as brick dust pow- 
dered charcoal, rotten stone, water, 
lime, or sifted wood or coal ashes. 

To Kemove Rust. — Moisten a rag 
with kerosene oil, dip it in dry brick 
dust and rub the knives with it. 

Ivory-handled Knives. — Keep the 
ivory and bone handles of steel-bladed 
knives out of water, especially hot 
water. After they have been used, set 
them in a deep dish or pitcher so that 
the water will cover the blades but 
will not touch the handles. Do not 
have the water too hot, or the part 
which runs up into the handle will 
expand and crack the bone or ivory. 
After washing the blades with soap 
and water, wipe the handles with a 
damp cloth. 

To Fasten Knife Handles. — If a 
bone or an ivory handle comes off the 
knife, mix a little plaster of Paris with 
water to a thin paste, pour it into the 
hole in the handle, insert the blade, 
and when cold it will be solid. 
Or fill the hole with powdered alum. 



142 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



Heat the steel end quite hot and push 
it into the hole. When cold it will be 
firmly fastened. 

To Bleach Ivory Knife Handles. — 
For whitening ivory the bleaching ac- 
tion of sunshine on a moist surface is 
recommended. Spirits of turpentine, 
alum, lime, potash, prepared chalk, 
ammonia, lemon juice, and pumice 
stone are also used. 

Make a paste of prepared chalk 
with aqua ammonia and olive oil. 
Cover the articles with this, and when 
dry rub it off. Repeat if necessary. 
Or rub with a cloth moistened in tur- 
pentine. Or moisten a cloth in vine- 
gar dipped in brick dust, and rub. Or 
dip half a lemon in salt and rub; 
afterwards rinse in warm water. Or 
make a paste of slacked lime and wa- 
ter, apply with a wet doth, and rub 
off when dry. Or use a mixture of 
whiting and potash lye. 

CAHE OF SIIVEBWABE 

The problems connected with the 
care of silverware are the daily clean- 
ing, the daily and weekly polishing, 
the prevention of stains and discol- 
orations, and the removal of these 
when formed. It is advisable to have 
a regular time for polishing silver 
each week, according to the conveni- 
ence of the housewife. In many 
households this is done on Saturday 
with other cleaning, as a part of the 
general preparation for Sunday when 
guests are often entertained and it 
is desirable to have the silver looking 
its best. 

To Pack and Store Silver. — Silver- 
ware which is not in daily use should 
be protected from contact with the 
air, which often contains traces of 
sulphureted hydrogen or marsh gas. 
This is the great enemy of silver. It 
occurs in illuminating gas, sewer gas, 
and many other compounds, and con- 
taminates the atmosphere. Retail 
jewelers prevent the discoloration of 
silver which is exposed for sale in shop 
windows by coating the articles with 
collodion diluted with alcohol. Col- 
lodion may be obtained at -any drug 



store or from a dealer in photographic 
supplies. To apply it first wash the 
articles, dry them, and heat them 
slightly over the fire. Apply the col- 
lodion with a wide, soft brush, laying 
it on in quick, even strokes. 

Collodion is a very quick dryer, 
hence it is necessary to have all the 
silver heated and in readiness and to 
work quicldy. Care must be taken 
to cover every part of the surface. 
One coating is sufficient. Collodion 
is perfectly transparent, hence does 
not injure the appearance of the arti- 
cles, and may be removed by washing 
in hot water. This is perhaps the most 
perfect protection for silverware that 
has to be stored for any length of time. 

Or pack the silverware in wooden 
starch boxes or other boxes of con- 
venient size and cover them with dry 
flour. This will prevent them from 
tarnishing. When the flour is wiped 
off they wiU be polished and in readi- 
ness for use. 

Or prepare cloth bags or pockets 
for silverware. Use for this purpose 
unbleached outing flannel, cotton flan- 
nel, or other unbleached goods. The 
bleaching powders and other prepara- 
tions of chlorine used in whitening 
fabrics will discolor silverware. 

Or wrap the articles in blue or other 
dark-colored tissue paper. White pa- 
per, like bleached fabrics, contains 
chemicals which discolor silver. 

Or wrap the articles in green baize, 
which does not attract moisture. Place 
in each pocket or drawer in which 
silver is kept a lump of gum camphor. 
This is the best preventive against 
tarnish. 

The best material with which to line 
the drawers of serving tables, trays, 
or boxes for silverware, or of which 
to make bags or pockets, is chamois 
skin. If the outside of the chamois skin 
is treated with melted white wax or 
beeswax applied with a soft brush and 
afterwards run over lightly vrith a hot 
iron, it will be nearly air-tight. 

Silverware Pockets. — The most 
convenient method of disposing of 
silver for daily use is a wide, shallow 
drawer in a serving table or sideboard, 



THE DAY'S ROUTINE 



143 



and with or without racks and trays 
to receive the individual pieces of sil- 
verware. The drawer should be lined 
with chamois skin, velvet, or flannel, 
and the silverware ranged in it in or- 
derly fashion. 

Or silverware pockets may be made 
of outing flannel and tacked on the 
back of the cupboard or pantry door. 
Take a strip of material the width of 
the door and about 18 inches deep. 




" Or Silverware Pockets May Be Made." 

Fold the lower part upon the upper, 
leaving room for a wide hem or head- 
ing at the top. Stitch down the fold- 
ed part on the sewing machine, leav- 
ing separate pockets for knives, forks, 
and other articles. Face the heading 
with a strip of canvas or other heavy 
material as a stay when tacking to 
the woodwork. 

Or make a simUar pocket with a 
lapel at the top instead of a hem. 
Fold or roll up in this the silver which 
is to be put away. 

To Wash Silver. — To wash silver 
prepare suds with boiling water, in 
which dissolve about an ounce of hard 
white soap to a quart of water, and 
add a teaspoonful of soda. Into this 
put the silver pieces and boil them for 
a few minutes. Pour off the suds, 
pour over them clean boiling water, 
wipe them dry on a clean towel with- 
out draining, and polish with a piece 
of chamois skin. 

To Folish Silver. — All plate and 
silverware which is in regular use and 
not stored in such a way as to pro- 
tect it from discoloration should be 
carefully polished once a week. It is 
best to have a regular time for this 
purpose. Never use sand or scouring 
soaps, pumice stone, or gritty wash- 



ing powders for silverware, or any 
other polishes the nature of which you 
do not understand. Many of them will 
scratch the silver, and others will dis- 
color it. 

Articles recommended for polishing 
silver if not much stained are whiting 
— either fluid, dry, or moistened with 
alcohol or sweet oil — prepared chalk, 
cream of tartar, milk, or a solution 
of alum. 

To apply these use chamois skin or 
velveteen. Or use pieces of old woolen 
or flannel underwear or pieces of old 
linen tablecloths. 

Or apply with an old toothbrush or 
a nailbrush with soft bristles. 

Or prepare and have ready polish- 
ing cloths as follows: dissolve half a 
cupful of scraps of castile or toilet 
soaps, or any hard white soap, in a 
cupful of water, and allow to cool. 
This will make a soft-soap jelly. Stir 
into this when cold 3 heaping table- 
spoonfuls of powdered whiting. In 
this soak suitable pieces of cloth, as 
old flannel underwear, pieces of table- 
cloths, and the like, letting them ab- 
sorb as much as possible. Wring them 
out so they will not drip, and allow 
them to dry. These are convenient 
polishing cloths for silver, as they are 
always ready. 

Or moisten whiting with soapy water, 
rub it over the silver carefully, and 
allow it to dry on. Then rub it off 
with a very soft woolen or linen cloth. 
Use a soft brush to remove the whit- 
ing from carvings or deep cuttings 
and rough surfaces of the larger sil- 
ver articles. 

Caution. — Care must be taken in 
polishing silver not to use too much 
force, as severe rubbing will wear solid 
silver and soon wear out the best of 
plated articles. 

To Bemove Stains and Siscolora- 
tions. — Methods recommended for 
cleaning discolored silver are boiling 
in suds or in water containing soda, 
sal soda, alum, cream of tartar, borax, 
or lye, or rubbing with dry salt, whit- 
ing, grated potatoes, or solutions of 
sulphuric acid, chloride of lime, alum, 
or cream of tartar. 



144 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVEEIES 



To Boil Tarnished Silver. — If the 
silver is much tarnished, boU for five 
minutes in water containing a mix- 
ture of equal parts of cream of tar- 
tar, common salt, and alum, using 1 
teaspoonful of each to 1 pint of water. 

Or use a strong solution of washing 
soda, 3 teaspoonfuls to 1 quart of 
water. 

Or put 1 tablespoonful of borax or 
potash lye in 2 quarts of water, put 
in the silver and boil five minutes, or 
longer if necessary. Pour off the 
liquid, rinse the silver in boiling water, 
and polish. This method will be found 
a quick and easy way to cleanse a 
conununion set or other set of numer- 
ous pieces. 

To Polish Tarnished Silver. — After 
boiling tarnished silver, if necessary 
apply with a sponge or rag powdered 
whiting moistened with sweet oil or 
alcohol. Rub over the articles thor- 
oughly with this and allow it to dry 
on. Afterwards rub it off with a soft 
cloth and polish with chamois leather. 

Or use prepared chalk and alcohol. 
If the articles are carved or rough, 
use a soft bristle brush to remove the 
cleanser. 

Or, if silver is badly tarnished, 
moisten whiting with ammonia, or pol- 
ish with a cloth dipped in ammonia 
water or in a mixture of 1 teaspoon- 
ful of ammonia water and 10 tea- 
spoonfuls of vinegar. But use the 
ammonia with caution, as it tends to 
dull the luster of the finest silver. 

Or use whiting moistened with vin- 
egar. 

Or polish with flannel dipped in 
kerosene and afterwards in dry whit- 
ing. 

Or, to remove stains that remain 
after boiling, take a piece of raw po- 
tato dipped in common baking soda. 

Or dissolve 1 tablespoonful of alum 
and 1 ounce of hard white soap in 1 
pint of water, and apply by rubbing. 

Or the burned-out hood or mantel 
of a Welsbach gas burner is one of 
the most effective silver polishes. Drop 
the hood into a tin spice can or other 
small covered can or jar, and pulver- 
jze it with the fingers. It will fall 



to pieces at a touch. Moisten a cloth 
with water and apply the pulverized 
ash to the tarnished spots. One hood 
will clean about two dozen knives, 
forks, or spoons. 

Or put all the silver in a shallow 
pan, cover with sour milk or butter- 
milk, and let it Ue until it is bright. 
Afterwards wash in soapsuds and pol- 
ish. 

To Remove Egg Stains. — The sul- 
phur contained in eggs speedily dis- 
colors any silver that comes in 
contact with it. The air is also con- 
taminated from the sulphur in illu- 
minating gas, other gaslights, or gas 
cook stoves, and from rubber. Hence 
silver should be kept from contact 
with these or any other sulphur com- 
pound. A small piece of camphor put 
with the silver will prevent it from 
staining. To remove the stains mois- 
ten a cloth in water and dip it in 
dry table salt. Rub with this and 
polish. 

Or wash them in water in which 
potatoes have been boiled. 

To Remove Medicine Stains. — Iodine 
and other ingredients in certain medi- 
cines may stain silver spoons. To re- 
move such stains, rub them with a 
piece of cloth dipped in dilute sul- 
phuric acid — 1 part of acid to 10 parts 
of water. Apply the acid with a swab 
made by winding a bit of linen about 
the end of a stick, as it will injure 
the skin. Wash immediately after- 
wards with soap and water. 

Silver fittings of inkstands and other 
sUver articles often become discolored 
with ink. The most effective cleanser 
is a paste made by moistening chloride 
of lime with water. Rub it on the 
stains imtil they disappear. After- 
wards wash with soap and water con- 
taining a little ammonia and polish. 

Silver Cleansers. — For cleaning 
jewelry manufacturing and retail 
jewelers use various mixtures which 
are safe and reliable. If these can be 
obtained they are often the most sat- 
isfactory cleansers of any. 

Or mix 3. ounces of jeweler's rouge 
with 6 ounces of prepared chalk. 

Or mix 4 ounces of prepared challj 



THE DAY'S EOUTINE 



145 



or whiting, J ounce of gum camphor, 
i ounce of alcohol, and 3 ounces of 
benzine. Allow this to dry on the sil- 
ver before polishing. 

Or mix 4 ounces of prepared chalk 
or whiting, 1 ounce of turpentine, 1 
ounce of alcohol, and 3 drams of spir- 
its of camphor. 

To Clean Britannia Ware. — First 
apply sweet oil with a sponge or piece 
of flannel. Wash in suds and water, 
and polish the same as silver. 

Or dissolve 4 ounces of yellow soap 
in 4 ounces of sweet oil, and dilute 
to a thick cream with alcohol. Apply 
with a soft sponge and polish with 
chamois. 

To Glean. China. — Cups and saucers 
and other articles of fine china often 
take on a yellow discoloration. To re- 
move this moisten a soft cloth in water 
and dip into dry salt or fine coal or 
Wood ashes, or a mixture of fuller's 
earth and baking soda, and rub oflF 
the stain with it. Afterwards wash 
with soap and water. 

To Clean Candlesticks. — To clean 
silver candlesticks, dip them in boiling 
water to remove grease, and after- 
wards clean and polish them like other 
silver articles. Do not attempt to 
scratch off the grease or wax with a 
knife or melt it off with dry heat, 
especially if they are plated, as plated 
ware is often based on a composition 
which will run if heated. 

To Clean Door Plates. — Silver door 
plates may be cleaned with aqua am- 
monia applied with a stiff brush. This 
is very effective for cleaning silver, 
but should not be used too freely upon 
finer silver articles, as it tends to 
deaden their luster. 

To Clean Silver Seals. — To restore 
monogram and initial seals of steel or 
silver to usefulness after they have be- 
gun to stick to the wax, first remove 
as much as possible of the dried wax 
from the lines of the design. Then 
soak the seal in a. moderately strong 
solution of oxalic acid, using a stiff 
brush to get at the fine lines, and re- 
move the loosened wax which formerly 
adhered. When the seal is thoroughly 
cleaned and bright, rub well with a 



cloth dampened with sweet oil, to neu- 
tralize further action of the acid and 
prevent the wax from again sticking. 

CAKE OF SINES AND DISPOSAL OP 
GABBA6E 

Care of Sinks. — Stretch a piece of 
picture wire or cord over the kitchen 
sink. Over this hang old newspapers. 
Crumple one of these in the hands and 
use it to wipe the grease from frying 
pans, pots, etc., before putting them 
into the dishwasher. This will prevent 
the excess of grease from coating the 
sink and stopping up the sink spout. 
Also use newspapers to wipe off the 
stove, table, sink, and floor when grease 
and other things have been spilled on 
them. Throw the papers at once into 
the fire box of the range, where they 
will be consuriied. Thus you will have 
no greasy dishwater or greasy dish 
cloths or towels to wash. 

To Clean Sinks. — The grease in 
dishwater tends to coat over the sink 
and sink spouts and form breeding 
places for the germs of filth diseases, 
as typhoid and other fevers, diph- 
theria, and the like. Keep at hand 
on a high shelf, out of reach of chil- 
dren, a bottle of carbolic acid. Once 
a week sprinkle a few drops of this 
about the sink. This will not only 
disinfect the sink itself, but also the 
sink spout, drain pipes, and drain. 

Or dissolve a pound of copperas in 
a gallon of boUing water. Pour this 
solution into a large glass bottle, cork, 
and keep out of the reach of children. 
Dilute half a pint with a quart of hot 
water and use to clean the sink daily. 

Or wet the bottom of the sink and 
sprinkle chloride of lime over it. This 
will remove all stains, and when rinsed 
off the water will disinfect the sink 
spout and drain. 

Or, when the sink is coated with 
grease or the sink spout is stopped up, 
put a pound or more of washing soda 
in a colander or strainer, and pour 
boiling water through it into the sink. 
Set the strainer into the water until 
the remainder of the soda is dissolved. 
If it does not run down after a time 



146 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



use force cups or partly fill the sink 
with water and press a rag down over 
the strainer. As soon as a way has 
been made, continue to pour hot soda 
■and water through the pipe to flush it. 

Care of Iron Sinks. — ^Do not use 
soap to wash an iron sink, but wash 
it in the water in which potatoes have 
been boiled. Use a raw or boiled po- 
tato to rub any spots that are rough 
or rusty; dipping the potato in bath 
brick will assist. Afterwards rinse 
clean with very hot clean water. This 
will keep the sink smooth and prevent 
rust. 

To Clean a Painted Sink. — Painting 
a sink with white or other enamel 
paint prevents rusting and improves 
its appearance, but acids and alkalis 
tend to remove the paint and cause 
rust. Cleanse the paint with u. rag 
moistened in kerosene and rinse with 
clear hot water. 

Homemade Sink. — There are still 
many dry sinks in various parts of the 
country which necessitates carrying all 
dishwater out of doors. These relics 
of barbarism should not be suffered to 
remain in any enliglitened household. 
A homemade sink may be made of 
plain boards and lined with tin or zinc 
at small cost. If this is set against 
an outer wall a foot or two of lead 
pipe will supply an outlet, and a 
wooden trough lined with lead, tin, or 
zinc, or merely tarred or painted, may 
carry away waste water to a cesspool. 
Make a box 4 feet long, 14 inches wide, 
and 5 inches deep, with open ends. 
Put in two partitions, leaving a 33- 
inch space in the center. Line this 
with tin or zinc, making a hole in one 
corner for the waste pipes. This 
leaves shelves at either hand for kitch- 
en utensils, water pail, or wash pan. 
Have the sink at such a height that it 
will not be necessary to stoop when 
using it. 

Garbage. — The problem of the dis- 
posal of garbage in small towns and 
villages is often a vexatious one. In 
cities garbage is, of course, removed 
by the authorities, and on farms it is 
usually fed to pigs and chickens. It 
is often remarked that the amount of 



food thrown away by the average 
American family would support a 
French or an Italian family of equal 
size and standing. 

Garbage cans of galvanized iron 
with tightly fitting lids can be ob- 
tained at small cost, and are most 
satisfactory. Some of these are now 
fitted with a place in the cover to hold 
a sponge wet with an antiseptic and 
deodorant. Such a can prevents all 
bad odors and does not attract flies. 
A box with a hinged lid buUt in one 
corner of the porch to hold the gar- 
bage can will prevent cats and dogs 
from tipping it over and strewing the 
contents about. 

Or a cheese box or other box sunk 
in the ground outside the door and 
covered with a tight lid may hold the 
garbage can or an ordinary garbage 
paU. This will keep the contents cool 
and prevent their being disturbed. 

Or a little cayenne pepper strewed 
above and about the can will discour- 
age the visits of animals. A news- 
paper laid inside the pail before the 
garbage is placed in it wUl keep the 
can in good order and make it an 
easy matter to clean it thoroughly. A 
small galvanized iron pail to stand on 
the kitchen or pantry table, and to be 
washed after each meal or at least 
once a day, is a convenient receptacle 
for the accumulation of kitchen scraps, 
and saves many outdoor trips to the 
garbage can. 

CHAUBEB WOBE 

To Air Beds. — Emanations from the 
body are absorbed by the sheets and 
through these contaminate the other 
bedding. Moreover, at times the air 
in unhealed rooms contains a good 
deal of moisture, and this penetrates 
all parts of the bedding. When the 
weather changes, the surface of the 
bed will dry much more quickly than 
other parts; hence the object of air- 
ing a bed is to purify it and to dry it 
by giving the moisture a good chance 
to evaporate. Open the bed the first 
thing in the morning, remove the cov- 
ers, and expose the mattress and the 



THE DAY'S ROUTINE 



147 



sheets separately to the air. If the 
weather is clear, open the windows if 
possible, but not if the outer air is 
damp from fog or rain. Once a week 
on cleaning day brush the mattress 
with a clean broom or stiff whisk 
broom, turning up the tufts and free- 
ing it of all dust. The Ideal way, 
from a sanitary point of view, is to 
leave the bed stripped all day and 
spread it up just before retiring. But 
as this is not always convenient, the 
next best course is to put off bed mak- 
ing imtil the last thing in the morning. 
A feather bed should be beaten and 
shaken up when it is stripped to air. 
In clear, dry weather it is a good 
plan to expose beds and bedding to 
outdoor air and sunshine, except the 
feather beds, which should be aired 
out of doors in a shady place. The 




A Modem Bedroom." 



direct rays of the sun may cause the 
animal oil in the feathers if new and 
if not properly cleaned to become 
rancid. But care must be taken not 
to air bedding out of doors when the 
air is damp from fog or mist. 

To Make Beds. — Spread the lower 
sheet with the seam down, the wide 
heading at the top, tucking it in all 
around. Spread the upper sheet with 
the hem up and the broad heading 6 
inches above the top edge of the mat- 
tress. Tuck the lower end in i firmly 
under the foot of the mattress. Spread 
the blankets with the open edges evenly 
together 6 inches from the head of the 



bed. Smooth downward. Tuck the 
bottom double edge firmly under the 
foot of the mattress. 

Add quilts, if any, in the same fash- 
ion. If a white counterpane is used 
the bed need not be open. Or if not, 
turn back the upper sheet over the 
blankets at least 12 inches to cover 
them well. Do not tuck in metal beds 
at the sides. The spread should be 
long enough to hang over the mattress 
at the foot of the bed. A tuft or light 
comforter to match the furnishings of 
the room may be folded twice length- 
wise, or square, with one edge turned 
over and placed across the foot of the 
bed. Or, if a wooden bedstead is used, 
the sheets and blankets may be tucked 
in at the sides before the spread is 
put on and tucked. Stand the pillows 
nearly erect. 

In winter when the feet are so apt 
to be cold in unhealed rooms an extra 
quilt or blanket spread over the lower 
half of the bed, and the other half 
folded under the mattress to prevent 
the clothes from pulling up, will help 
to keep the feet warm. 

Bedroom Ware. — Clean all bedroom 
ware and the marble tops of wash- 
stands and tables with a rag dipped 
in turpentine. This not only cleanses 
but disinfects them. 

How to Cool Bedrooms, — In summer 
it is often more important to keep 
hot air out than to let cool air in. 
Hence if bedrooms are aired during 
the early part of the day and the cur- 
tains then drawn and shutters closed 
until night, the bedrooms may be 
cooler than if they had been open to 
the outer air all day. 

Or, when very important to cool a 
room quickly, wet a large cloth and 
suspend it over a line where, if pos- 
sible, a draught will strike it. This 
will cool the air by evaporation ap- 
proximately ten degrees according io 
circumstances. This plan is frequently 
practiced in hot climates. 

To Darken Rooms. — Bedrooms 
should be provided with dark-green 
shades in addition to the white shades, 
or if these are not present u. strip of 
dark-green baize or glazed calico may 



148 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



be pinned inside the blind or attached 
to the white shades when it is neces- 
sary to darken room. 

QABE OF LAMPS 

Lamps should be cleaned and then 
filled each morning and the wicks 
trimmed. The improved steadiness of 
the light will repay for the trouble. 
When buying a lamp, get two or three 
extra chimneys and burners, and a 
yard or two of wicking. This will 
save much delay and annoyance, espe- 
cially when kerosene is the only light 
to be had, and it is not convenient to 
go to the store. It is very desirable, 
as far as possible, to have lamps and 
burners alike, so that the parts and 
supplies may be interchangeable. 

Have a S-gallon can for kerosene 
oil fitted with a pump. Place this on 
a homemade truck fitted with casters, 
so that it can be rolled under a shelf 
or into the pantry and drawn out 
again without lifting. 

To Clean lamps. — Collect all the 
lamps in the house after the chamber 
work has been done, and place them 




"Colkct A II the Lamps." 

on a shelf near the oil can, which may 
be pushed under the kitchen sink. 
First remove the chimneys and place 
them near the sink to be washed. 
Trim the wicks by rubbing the crust 



from them with the fingers or a piece 
of stock, as a burnt match. Do not, 
as a rule, use the scissors, or, if they 
are necessary, cut off the corners so 
as to round the wick up to the center 
instead of cutting straight across. See 
that the wicks are long enough to 
reach the bottom of the lamp. Insert 
a new wick when necessary. Place the 
lamp on the top of the oil can and fill 
with a pump. Or, if a 1-gaUon can 
is used, take care that the oil does not 
spatter the surrounding woodwork and 
perhaps cause a conflagration. Wipe 
the lamps clean with a, cloth kept for 
this purpose. Do not leave cloths 
soaked with kerosene matter together 
in dark corners, as they may become 
ignited by spontaneous combustion. 
Wash the lamps in soap and water; 
wash and put on the chimneys, and 
place them on a shelf ready for use. 

To Clean Lamp Chimneys. — A 
sponge is the best thing with which to 
clean lamp chimneys. Select a sponge 
large enough to fiil the biggest part 
of the chimney inside, thrust a stick 
into the center of the sponge, and fas- 
ten it with a string, wire, or tacks, 
dip it into soapsuds, and swab the in- 
side of the glass. Afterwards rinse 
with hot water and polish. 

To Polish Lamp Chimneys. — Use 
the small paper bags that contained 
groceries. Crumple and rub th,ese to- 
gether to soften them. Draw a bag 
on your hand like a glove, and polish 
with it. Hold your hand over one end 
of the chimney and breathe into it at 
the other end before polishing. 

Or save tissue paper for this pur- 
pose. 

Or rinse chimneys thoroughly in hot 
water and stand them on a hot cover 
of the kitchen range. They will sput- 
ter but will not break, and will dry 
clear and shining inside and out. If 
the suds are not rinsed off, however, 
they will leave stains. 

If chimneys are smoked with soot, 
remove it with a dry cloth covered 
with salt. 

Or soak them in hot water with 
washing soda, and wash in warm wa- 
ter containing aqua ammonia. 



THE DAY'S ROUTINE 



149 



To Clean Gloljes. — Rough or orna- 
mented glass globes which become 
smoked or grimed with dust may be 
placed in a vessel of cold water con- 
taining a tablespoonful of washing 
soda and brought to a boil. After- 
wards scrub with soap and water, us- 
ing a nailbrush, or with warm water 
containing ammonia. Rinse in warm 
or hot water, drain, dry, and polish. 

Care of lamp Chimneys. — Lamp 
chimneys frequently crack when the 
lamp is lighted, especially if they are 
in a cold room. You may know if the 
chimney is too cold from the fact that 
steam will gather upon it. When this 
is the case keep the flame low until 
the chimney becomes warm enough to 
dispel the steam, and turn the light 
up by degrees. 

Another cause of broken chimneys 
is cutting the wicks square across, 
which leaves a corner to flare to one 
side. Rub off the crust, or clip the 
corner so as to round up the wick 
toward the center. 

Care of Burners. — Have at hand a 
complete set of extra burners. Once 
a month or so change the burners and 
boil the soUed one in a solution of 
sal soda or baking soda until per- 
fectly clean and bright. Afterwards 
polish with sand soap, bath brick, or 
pumice. 

When the burner becomes clogged 
with dirt and dust, soak it in a solu- 
tion of potash or soda lye and hot 
water, moving it about with a stick 
until the dirt is moistened. After- 
wards boU with baking soda until 
thoroughly cleaned. 

lamp Chimneys — To Prevent their 
Breaking.— Wrap the glass in several 
thicknesses of cheese cloth, cover with 
a strong solution of cold salt water, 
and bring to a boil. Boil ten or fif- 
teen minutes, and leave the glass in 
the water to cool. If this is done each 
time the chimneys are washed they 
will become thoroughly toughened and 
practically unbreakable. If they can 
be put in a kettle of water on the 
range and boiled all day, so much the 
better. 

Care of Lamps. — Lamps should not 



be allowed to stand partly empty, as 
the oil tends to generate a gas which 
may explode if ignited. They should 
be filled daily, but not quite full. 
When heated the oil expands, and if 
the lamp is full it will run over and 
drop. Fill to within half an inch or 
so of the top, trim, and rub dry with 
a. soft cloth. 

Metal Lamps. — Bronze lamps should 
be merely dusted or wiped with a 
flannel cloth, and care should be taken 
not to allow the oil to spill on them, 
as it has a tendency to take oS the 
bronze. They should not be washed 
with soap and water. 

Lacquer lamps may be washed, but 
not with sal soda or any strong wash- 
ing powder, alcohol, or any form of 
naphtha, as these all may injure the 
lacquer. 

To Mend Lamps. — The brass top of 
a lamp to which the burner is screwed 
sometimes gets broken, and may be 
mended either with alum or plaster of 
Paris. Remove the ring from the top 
and dig out the dry plaster of Paris 
with a penknife. Make a paste of 
fresh plaster of Paris with water, fill 
the threads of the brass with this, 
heaping on all that it will hold. Place 
it in position to harden. The plaster 
of Paris will swell and hold the top 
tightly. 

Or fill the hollow part with pow- 
dered alum and melt it on the stove. 
When melted put it in place, and when 
cold it will be found to adhere tightly. 

Lamps — To Prevent their Smoking. 
— If the wick is thoroughly soaked in 
strong vinegar and afterwards dried 
it will give a clear light and prevent 
smoking. 

Or place a small piece of rock salt 
close to the flame inside the burner. 
This not only prevents smoke but 
brightens the flame. 

Lamp Wicks. — Save old felt hats. 
They make excellent lamp wicks and 
wicks for oil stoves. 

A substitute for a lamp wick may 
be made from old cotton stockings or 
outing flannel by taking a strip about 
three times the width of the burner, 
folding at the edges, and hemming on 



150 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



the sewing machine. A supply of 
lamp wicks can be made up in advance 
from old pieces without expense, and 
always be at hand when needed. 

Wicks should be changed occasion- 
ally and may be cleansed by boiling 
them with vinegar and afterwards dry- 
ing thoroughly before using. 

PKEPABATIONS FOE THE NIGHT 

To Prepare for Sleep. — All clothing 
worn during the day should be re- 
moved, and a night garment, jDrefer- 
ably of linen or wool, should be put 
on. A warm bath j ust before retiring 
is a most healthful custom. The bed 
covers should never be drawn over the 
head, as this results in breathing again 
and again the carbonic acid thrown 
off from the lungs, and also taking 
into the lungs the poisonous exhala- 
tions from the body. The body should 
recline on the side rather than on the 
back, the bed being placed so that 
the face may be turned away from 
the light. The bed should not be ex- 
posed to draughts or to direct heat 
from stoves, registers, or radiators. 
It should be moved away from a damp 
or cold wall. All curtains, canopies, 
valances, and other draperies should 
be discarded from beds and bedrooms, 
and only the simplest shades and lace 
or muslin curtains should be permit- 
ted. All draperies interfere with the 
circulation of air, accumulate dust, 
and act as catchalls for the bacteria 
which are the germs of diseases. 

Bed covers should not be suffered 
to hang down to the floor so as to 
impede the circulation of the air be- 
neath them. If the bed can stand in 
the middle of the room without being 
exposed to draughts or direct heat, so 
much the better. 

To Warm Beds. — The old-fashioned 
way of warming a bed in winter by 
means of a brass warming pan filled 
with hot coals from the open fireplace 
is largely out of use. It is quite in- 
convenient to take coal from a mod- 
ern range or cook stove for this pur- 
pose. Moreover, the heat from a 
warming pan is very soon gone. 



Ordinary red brick, soapstones, or 
hot-water bottles are now generally 
used. A good hot-water bottle is a 
great luxury, and one or more should 
be in every household. It is especially 
valuable in case of sickness, but if one 
cannot be afforded for every member 
of the family, common red bricks are 
always obtainable. 

It is customary to roll up bricks in 
old cloths, but a much neater and 
more convenient method is to prepare 
separate bags for each member of the 
family as follows: 

Use bed ticking as lining, because 
it is smooth and hard and slips on 
easily. Cover with outing flannel or 
any soft woolen material, as old flan- 
nel underwear, and use cotton batting 
or a very thin sheet of asbestos as 
interlining. Cut the lining and inter- 
lining to the proper size, lay them 
together, and stitch all around. After- 
wards bring the ends and sides to- 
gether and hem to form a bag, leaving 
enough material on one side to make 
a flap over the open end and fasten- 
ing with a button. Make these bags 
rather loose so that they will draw on 
easily. 

After supper place one or two 
bricks in the oven for each member 
of the family, remove them an hour or 
so before bedtime, stand them on end 
on top of the stove, and slip the covers 
over them. These are preferable to 
flatirons, as they are more convenient, 
and are far cheaper than hot-water 
bottles. 

Here is a hint for a useful Christ- 
mas present for every member of the 
family, which can be made by anyone 
and will be appreciated cold nights 
for years to come. 

nature of Sleep. — In sleep the heart 
beats are less frequent and less force- 
ful, although more regular. The blood 
circulates more slowly and the breath- 
ing is slower, deeper, and more rhyth- 
mical. Hence the temperature of the 
whole body is lowered and less blood 
is distributed to the extremities. The 
blood seems, in fact, to partially leave 
the extremities, including the brain, 
and to settle about the stomach and 



THE DAY'S HOUTINE 



151 



other internal organs. Hence the 
process of digestion is rather increased 
than otherwise during sleep. On the 
other hand, the excretion of waste, ,as 
in perspiration, is normally less dur- 
ing sleep. The activity of the nervous 
system is somewhat diminished. As 
to the mental faculties, the imagina- 
tion is very active and the emotions 
have full play, but sensation or feel- 
ing is much weakened. Consciousness 
and will are entirely suspended, and 
thought and memory are greatly 
modified. 

Nature of Dreams. — ^Many persons 
attach more importance to dreams 
than is either wise or proper. These 
may be suggested by habitual lines of 
thought or by recent events that have 
made a strong impression upon the 
mind. Or they may be caused by re- 
flex action in various parts of the 
body, as indigestion may cause night- 
mare. Some persons fear the effects 
of bad dreams on bodily, and others 
on mental or moral, grounds. Others, 
again, believe that the mind is most 
active during sleep and may suggest 
wiser courses of conduct than during 
its waking hours. Both of these sup- 
positions are probably equally wide of 
the mark. 

It may be doubted whether there is 
such a thing as a dreamless sleep. On 
awaking, a sleeper may remember 
only a portion of his dream and as- 
sume that his sleep was dreamless, 
because the remainder of it has been 
forgotten. On the whole, dreaming 
may be regarded as a normal condi- 
tion of sleep and dismissed with the 
least possible conscious attention. 

Sleeplessness. — The common opinion 
that sleep is the result of fatigue is 
not exactly correct. On the other 
hand, sleep itself may give rise to 
drowsiness, or persons may feel drowsy 
without being either physically or men- 
tally fatigued. Extreme exhaustion is 
a common cause of sleeplessness. All 
these facts probably come within the 
personal experience of everyone. 

When not produced by pain or im- 
mediate stress of anxiety, grief, or 
other acute mental disturbances, sleep- 



lessness usually arises from overwork- 
ing the nerves. The cure of sleepless- 
ness depends, of course, upon its cause. 
If due to nervousness (neurasthenia), 
the nature of that complaint must be 
taken into account. Nervousness is a 
disease of brain workers, and especial- 
ly, according to physicians, of school 
teachers. While it is a very depress- 
ing and trying condition, it has one 
characteristic that may or may not 
commend itself to those who are 
acutely suffering from it. It rarely, 
if ever, kills anyone. On the contrary, 
it is distinctly a curable disease. The 
best general idea of this condition is 
expressed in a figure of speech attrib- 
uted to the celebrated Dr. Graeme 
Hammond, a specialist in nervous dis- 
eases. Dr. Hammond compared the 
condition of a nervous patient to that 
of a common electric battery which is 
used in connection with a push button 
to ring doorbells. Sometimes when 
one pushes the button the bell fails to 
ring. On investigation the wires may 
he found to be in perfect condition 
and properly connected, but the bat- 
tery has become exhausted so that the 
electric current no longer flows over 
the wires. Similarly, it would seem as 
though the body generates a current 
of vital energy which flows over the 
nerves, and that mental work of all 
sorts exhausts this vital fluid more 
quickly than does physical work. The 
result would seem to be that while the 
nerves themselves may be in perfect 
condition, they are temporarily as 
helpless to execute the mandates of 
the will as the electric wire is inca- 
pable of performing its functions 
when the battery which supplies it is 
worn out. 

Those who have suffered from this 
complaint will note that while in its 
early stages they may begin the day's 
work in a perfectly normal condition, 
a time comes before nightfall when 
the nervous energy appears to be ex- 
hausted. Now is the moment, ac- 
cording to Dr. Hammond, for good 
j udgment to step in. Stop work imme- 
diately and take things easy the rest 
of the day and evening, retiring as 



152 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



early as possible. If this is not done, 
if, on the contrary, the wires or nerves 
are used after the " electricity " or 
nervous energy has been exhausted, 
one or both of two results may hap- 
pen: either the "battery,* or that 
function of the body which generates 
the vital nervous energy, becomes over- 
worlced and permanently or tempo- 
rarily exhausted, or the nerves them- 
selves may be affected and subject to 
various forms of degeneration, either 
temporarily or permanently, and both 
of these conditions may be accom- 
panied by insomnia. Hence sleepless- 
ness is not always a simple condition 
to be treated in various ways when it 
happens, but most often is a symptom 
of nervous exhaustion which is incur- 
able by simple remedies, but may be 
prevented by avoiding overexertion, 
especially toward the latter part of 
the day. 

Sleep is so necessary that a per- 
son suffering from insomnia is often 
tempted to use sleeping powders of all 
sorts, which usually contain opium dis- 
guised under various scientific or fan- 
ciful titles. This is a serious mistake, 
the evil effects of which cannot be too 
strongly emphasized. 

To Induce Sleep. — Assuming that 
the nerves and body are in a normal 
condition, sleep may be induced by 
anything which tends to produce the 
results noted in slumber. As one of 
the characteristics of sleep is the 
absence of sensation, removing the 
sources of external impressions helps 
to induce sleep. The absence of light 
and soimd and of the muscular sensa- 
tions produced by any sort of move- 
ment all assist. 

Anything which causes the blood to 
retreat from the brain and settle about 
the digestive tract is helpful. Hence 
earnest thought or worrying should 
be given up if possible. Monotonous 
sounds that attract the attention, as 
the ticking of a clock or the sound of 
running water, by diverting the mind 
from other thoughts, may have this 
effect; hence the common suggestion 
to count monotonously from 1 to 10 
or 1 to 100 and over again, or to 



count imaginary sheep jumping over 
a gate, is not without reason. But 
in many cases these suggestions have 
exactly the opposite effect to that in- 
tended by stimulating rather than 
quieting the activity of the brain. 

Perhaps there is no better rule 
when there is a tendency to nervous- 
ness than to let the mind fashion cas- 
tles in the air. To make up stories 
and imagine conditions of an ideal 
sort such as exist only in fairy tales 
or in our dreams, produces a mental 
condition favorable to sleep, and the 
transition from day dreams to those 
of slumber is natural and easy. 

On the physical side it may be 
questioned whether fasting by going 
without one's supper is advisable. 
An overfilled stomach may lead to 
insomnia by causing , indigestion, but 
an empty stomach may produce the 
same effect. Hence a moderate meal 
of good food, easily digestible, is ad- 
visable, as the process of digestion 
itself tends to draw the blood to the 
stomach and occupy it until sleep 
comes. 

Stimulants, as tea, coffee, or alco- 
hol, which promote the circulation, 
should be avoided at night. A short 
walk before retiring to bring on a 
natural fatigue may be helpful. A 
glass of hot milk is found beneficial 
by some. 

Late hours and excitement, as at- 
tending theaters, evening parties, in- 
dulging in stimulants, exciting read- 
ing matter, and games of chance, 
should be avoided. A warm sponge 
bath or a full body bath in warm 
water of the temperature of 95° to 
100° and lasting fifteen or twenty 
minutes is especially helpful to ner- 
vous persons. 

Or imitate a condition which oc- 
curs in sleep by turning the eyeballs 
upward as if attempting to look into 
the brain. This is not always effec- 
tive, as with some persons the effort 
stimulates and irritates the brain and 
thus defeats itself, but with others it 
produces the desired result. 

It is well known that the best sleep 
is that which takes place during the 



THE DAY'S EOUTINE 



153 



earlier hours of the night; during the 
latter part of the night sleep is light- 
er. Toward morning a state occurs 
between sleeping and waking which it 
is not desirable to prolong. The hab- 
it of springing to one's feet in the 
morning as soon as consciousness re- 
turns is an exceedingly desirable one, 
and if it appears that one is not suf- 
ficiently rested, sleep should be sought 
earlier on the following night. 

To Prevent Sleeplessness. — Take a 
warm bath just before retiring. Or 
walk for half an hour in the open air. 



Or wet a cloth in cold water and lay 
it on the back of the neck. Or rub 
the body gently with a flesh brush for 
ten or fifteen minutes. Or drink a 
cup of hot milk on retiring, or a 
glass of buttermilk. Or drink a tum- 
blerful of water containing a tea- 
spoonful of magnesia and a few drops 
of aqua ammonia or sal volatile. 

To Sleep on Hot Nights. — Lay a 
strip of clean matting between the 
mattress and the sheet. This will 
make the bed much cooler. Use linen 
sheets in preference to cotton ones. 



CHAPTER IV 

PREPARATIONS FOR WASH DAY 

SOLVENTS FOR SPOTS AND STAINS— KINDS OF SPOTS AND STAINS 
—STAINS ON WHITE LINEN OR COTTON— TO REMOVE STAINS 
FROM VEGETABLE FIBERS— TO REMOVE STAINS FROM ANIMAL 
FIBERS— TO CLEAN COLORED GOODS— TO DRY-CLEAN MEN'S 
GARMENTS— TO DRY-CLEAN WOMEN'S GARMENTS— CLEANING 
AND CARE OF GLOVES— TO CLEAN FEATHERS, FURS, AND 
STRAW— BLEACHING VEGETABLE AND ANIMAL FIBERS 



The custom of this country has es- 
tablished Monday as wash day. Many 
families, however, prefer Tuesday, in 
order to have an opportunity on 
Monday to sort over the different ar- 
ticles, mend tears, remove stains, and 
the Uke, 

Bed clothing is usually changed on 
Saturday, and body clothing on Sat- 
urday or Sunday, so that aU clothes 
may be readily collected and at hand 
early Monday morning. 

Laundry Bags. — Each person in the 
family should have a laundry bag in 
his or her own room in which soiled 
garments may be kept in preparation 
for the weekly wash. A separate laim- 
dry bag for soiled table linen and 
napkins should be hung on the back 
of the pantry door or some other 
clean, dry place where mice cannot 
get at it. If these articles are not 
kept out of the way they will scent 
the spots of grease in table linen and 
gnaw their way to them. 

Laundry bags may be made of 
heavy unbleached muslin, or worn-out 
pillowcases may be used, by facing 
them to hold a draw string. 

Ordinary crash toweling, folded 
across and sewed at the sides, makes 
a convenient laundry bag. 

Or ornamental bags may be made 
in the form of a double pocket having 
one opening across the middle with 
two baglike receptacles. 



Clothes Hamper. — In addition to 
these laundry bags a clothes hamper 
located conveniently near the laundry 
will be found very handy to receive 
soiled towels and bed linen. Covered 
basket hampers may be obtained at 
the stores. 

Or a cheap clothes hamper may be 
made from a small barrel, by lining 
it inside with cambric or calico and 
covering the outside with cretonne or 
other material arranged in plaits. The 
lid may be covered with the same ma- 
terial and supplied with a covered 
knob in the center. The lining should 
be sewed together in breadths like a 
skirt. 

Or a hamper may be made of a dry- 
goods box by lining and covering it 
in the same manner with any suitable 
material. By padding the top this 
box may be used as a seat and may 
be placed where a barrel would be in- 
convenient. 

Sorting the Laundry. — Spread a 
white sheet on the floor and empty 
on this the contents of the laundry 
bags and hamper. Sort the small and 
delicate pieces of fine linen, as laces, 
fine waists, aprons, and petticoats, in 
one pile. It is a good plan to have 
one or two wash bags of cotton, about 
two feet square, in which to place 
these pieces to soak and boil them. 
Or they can be boiled separately in a 
kettle or small boiler. 



154 



PREPARATIONS FOR WASH DAY 



155 



Put the table linen, linen towels, 
and doilies in one pile; the bed and 
body linen, kitchen towels, and bath 
towels in another; the colored clothes, 
hosiery, and coarser articles in a third ; 
and the flannels and woolens by them- 
selves. These lots should be kept sep- 
arate throughout the washing, the fine 
linen and table linen going into the 
first tub and the first boiler; bed and 
body linen into the second tub and 
second boiler; colored clothes being 
washed separately, but not boiled; 
and flannels being reserved for sepa- 
rate treatment. By this plan the 
same suds may be used in the boiler 
if desired, although changing the 
water is much to be preferred. 

Laundry — To Remove Stains. — 
While sorting the clothes, they should 
be carefully looked over for stains 
from fruit, grass, acids, pencil marks, 
ink, etc., as these may be much more 
readily eradicated before they are 
touched by soap or boiling water. 
Pencil marks especially should be 
erased carefully with a rubber eraser, 
as the hot water will make them in- 
delible. 

SOLVENTS FOB SPOTS AKD STAIKS 

How to Erase Stains. — The com- 
monest stains that have to be re- 
moved from textile fabrics are ink, 
grass green, iron rust, mildew, grease 
spots, paint, and tar. These require 
treatment according to the nature of 
the stain and the fabric. The princi- 
pal chemicals that should be kept on 
hand in the laundry closet to remove 
stains are certain acids, especially 
oxalic, tartaric, and muriatic acid; 
together with ammonia and hyposul- 
phite of soda to neutralize the effect 
of the acid after the stain has been 
removed; aqua arrimonia for the same 
purpose; various substances that have 
the power of cutting or dissolving 
gums and resins, as aleoholi chloro- 
form, and oil of turpentine; and cer- 
tain absorbents, as chalk, French 
chalk, pipe clay, fuller's earth, and the 
like. Other useful articles — as fresh 
milk, sour milk, buttermilk, cream of 



tartar, lemon juice, salt, raw potato, 
etc., will usually be at hand. 

Treatment of Spots and Stains. — 
Treatment for stains in general should 
be progressive, beginning with the 
milder remedies and reserving the 
more powerful ones to the last. Fresh 
stains are much more easily soluble 
than those that are allowed to remain 
until various chemical changes have 
taken place. Hence prompt treat- 
ment is always advisable. When 
stains are fresh, immediate applica- 
tion of any dry absorbent powder, as 
common salt, common starch, chalk, 
pipe clay, etc., wiU take up much of 
the staining fluid. Dipping at once 
into boiling water for some stains and 
into milk for others will assist in dis- 
solving the stain, and various other 
agents may then be applied while the 
fabric is wet. If the stains have been 
suffered to dry they must usually be 
wet by soaking to swell the fibers of 
the fabric, and allow the cleansing 
substance "to be absorbed. 

Soap should never be applied to a 
stained fabric until the stains have 
been removed. After chemical treat- 
ment, the article should be first rinsed 
in clear water and then washed in 
soapsuds or put into the regular 
wash. 

The Laundry Closet. — It will be 
found very convenient to provide a 
special receptacle in the kitchen or 
laundry for the various articles for 
removing stains, and for the soaps, 
washing compounds, bluing, starch, 
and other things used in the laundry. 
A complete list will include hard bar 
soap, both white and yellow, naphtha 
soap, sal soda, bluing, wheat and corn 
starch, borax, aqua ammonia, sugar 
of lead, oxalic, muriatic, and tartaric 
acids, bleaching powder (chloride of 
lime), caustic potash, turpentine, ben- 
zine, and gasoline, besides various 
cleansing mixtures. This closet should 
have a strong lock or padlock, and 
the key should be kept beyond the 
reach of children. Every bottle and 
package of poisonous substances 
should be plainly labeled and should 
bear the word " Poison." 



156 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



utensils for Stains or Spots. — ^Tbe 
laundry closet should also contain a 
number of small sponges, which can 
be bought for ten cents a dozen, for 
applying various substances to stained 
fabrics; likewise several sizes of small 
camel's-hair paint brushes, such as 



If 



§Ti*VfVf,\'ii^i' 



rnmmmii 




" The Laundry Closet." 

are used for water colors. The stiff 
fibrous sponges called " loofah," which 
cost about ten cents apiece, are es- 
pecially useful for grease stains or 
spots. If the goods is rough these 
can be used to scrape with vigorously. 
They can also be used with a lighter 
touch on delicate fabrics. They leave 
no lint and are easily washed and 
dried. When removing spots or 
stains, first hold the garment to the 
light, and if the stain is on the sur- 
face scrape off as much of it as pos- 
sible with a sharp knife before wet- 
ting the fabric or applying chemicals. 
Acids to Remove Stains. — The 
laundry cupboard should be furnished 
with a 4- or 6-ounce vial of oxalic 
and of tartaric acid and a 2-ounce 
vial of muriatic acid. These will be 
found easy to apply, and prove much 
more effective than many of the or- 
dinary methods that often must be 
employed if they are not kept at 
band. 



Cautions in TTse of Acids. — These 
acids are all poisonous and must be 
labeled "Poisoir," and locked up out 
of the reach of children. They must 
not be used on colored fabrics, and 
must be quickly and thoroughly rinsed 
out as soon as the stain has been re- 
moved. When possible, they should 
be followed by the use of hyposul- 
phite of soda, ammonia, or other 
chemical that will neutralize the acid. 

Oxalic Acid. — ^Thls is the active 
principle of salts of sorrel. When 
combined with cream of tartar it is 
known as salts of lemon. It may be 
dissolved in one part of boiling water. 
It is a dangerous poison, and in cer- 
tain quantities will cause death in 
about ten minutes. It is used for 
cleaning leather, scouring metals, es- 
pecially brass and copper, and for re- 
moving various stains. It has very 
much the appearance of Kpsom salts, 
from which it must be carefully dis- 
tinguished. 

Use of Oxalic Acid. — OxaUc acid is 
especially useful in the laundry to re- 
move iron mold, fruit stains, and Ink 
spots produced by the old style iron- 
gall Inks. It does not, however, re- 
move ink stains produced by modern 
writing fluids or blue-black inks com- 
posed of aniline dyes. Oxalic acid 
may be applied to cotton, linen, wool- 
en, silk, or any ordinary fabric if un- 
colored, but it bleaches colored goods. 
The color, can, however, in most cases 
be restored by aqua ammonia. When 
possible, it is advisable to experiment 
with a sample of the goods before ap- 
plying oxaUc acid to colored articles. 

To Apply Oxalic Acid. — The acid 
may be applied alone, either dissolved 
in Its own bulk of boiling water for a 
" saturated " solution, or in nine parts 
of cold water for a " dilute " solution. 

Or, as salts of lemon, it may be dis- 
solved in 1 to 10 parts of water, either 
hot or cold. The action of the acid 
is increased by heat as in boiling 
water. 

To apply, either wet the spot in 
water and cover with dry oxalic acid 
or salts of lemon, or dip the spot into 
the solution, or apply the solution to 



PREPARATIONS FOR WASH DAY 



157 



the spot with a small brush, sponge, 
or piece of rag. If the stains are old 
or have penetrated through the fabric 
it will be necessary to rub the acid 
vigorously into the spot and persist 
patiently until successful. Oxalic acid 
is also recommended to bleach silk in 
the proportion of 4 pounds of the 
acid and 4 pounds of salt to 2 quarts 
of water for the raw silk, or 2 ounces 
of oxalic acid and 2 ounces of salt to 
6 quarts of water for white silk that 
has become yellowed from washing. 
The latter proportions may be ob- 
served for removing vegetable or fruit 
stains, should it be necessary to im- 
merse the article in the solution. 

As soon as the stain disappears, 
rinse with clear water, and after- 
wards wash with soapsuds. 

Uses of Citric Acid. — This is the 
acid principle of alum and lemon 
juice; it is also found in gooseberries, 
currants, and some other fruits. It 
is intensely sour, is readily soluble in 
water, and is used in medicine; in 
dyeing, to heighten certain colors, and 
to break up certain coloring com- 
pounds. Citric acid may be used dis- 
solved in slightly more than its own 
bulk of water for a saturated solu- 
tion, or in 10 or more parts for a 
dilute solution. It may be applied 
to white goods or fast-dyed cotton or 
woolen, by moistening the stain with 
a solution by means of the finger tips, 
a small brush, sponge, or rag. Rinse 
immediately in clear water. It may 
be used for stains from fruit, iron- 
gall inks, iron rust, or mildew; but 
for these oxalic or tartaric acids are 
commonly preferred. In the form of 
lemon juice, citric acid is a mild but 
useful agent, and one generally em- 
ployed. With the addition of salt on 
colored goods it may safely be used 
on any ordinary fabric. To apply, 
saturate the spot with lemon juice, 
and for colored goods cover with dry 
salt. Expose to direct sunshine and 
repeat if necessary. 

Or apply lemon juice and salt, and 
steam the fabric over a kettle. 

TTses of Lactic Acid. — ^This is the 
acid which forms in milk when it 



turns sour and which is, therefore, 
contained in buttermilk. It is the 
presence of this acid which causes 
buttermilk to be employed in the proc- 
ess of bleaching linen. Sweet milk, 
sour milk, and buttermilk are all 
recommended _ for the treatment of 
stains in fabrics, the action being 
strong in proportion as the liquid 
sours with age. Hence, when stains 
are fresh they may be removed by 
dipping immediately in warm milk; 
but when they are more stubborn, 
they may require soaking in butter- 
milk for some time. The addition of 
common salt increases their effective- 
ness. This is a simple and useful 
means of treating ink stains from 
iron-gall inks, tea stains, red-wine 
stains, and fruit stains, especially 
when fresh. Sour buttermilk also 
erases mildew. Wet or soak the arti- 
cle in fresh or sour milk or butter- 
milk, cover with common salt — ^which 
contains chlorine, a powerful bleach- 
ing agent — and expose to sunshine in 
the open air. 

Nature of Tartaric Acid. — This is 
the acid principle of cream of tartar 
and is found in a free state in vari- 
ous plants and fruits, especially the 
grape. It is readily soluble in either 
alcohol or water. If dissolved in 
water and allowed to stand it deteri- 
orates, turning into acetic acid. It is 
the acid principle of Rochelle salts 
and is principally used in dyeing, in 
preparing effervescing beverages, and 
as an ingredient in baking powder. In 
medicine it is used as a tartar emetic. 

Tartaric acid is but slightly poison- 
ous, is much less destructive to cloth 
fibers than are other acids, and does 
not injure fast colors. It may be 
dissolved in less than its own bulk of 
water, and hence may be used in a 
very strong solution and readily 
washed out of the most delicate 
fabrics. 

Uses of Tartaric Acid. — Tartaric 
acid is especially useful in grass 
stains, as it changes the chlorophyll 
and chlorophyUan into soluble sub- 
stances. It is nearly as effective as 
oxalic acid on ink spots from iron- 



158 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



gall inks. It may be used on all or- 
dinary linen, silk, cotton, woolen, or 
other fabrics, and if combined with 
salt will not cause the colors to run. 
The usefulness of this article in the 
laundry does not seem to be generally 
known. 

To Apply Tartaric Acid. — Wet the 
spot with water and apply the dry 
acid with or without an equal quan- 
tity of salt. 

Or wet the spot and cover with 
cream of tartar, with or without its 
bulk of salt. The process will be 
quickened if the stain is held over the 
steam of a teakettle or laid upon a 
heated dinner plate or other smooth, 
heated surface. The acid may be 
rubbed into white goods with the fin- 
ger tips or the bowl of a spoon, but 
on colored goods it should be applied 
more carefully. 

Or, for a saturated solution, dis- 
solve in its own bulk or less of hot 
water. For a dilute solution dissolve 
in 10 or more parts of cold water. 
Apply same as oxalic acid. 

Nature of Salts of Lemon. — This 
is a compound of equal parts in bulk 
of cream of tartar and salts of sor- 
rel. It combines the effects of tar- 
taric and oxalic acids. Its uses and 
methods of application are similar. 
It may be used on the same fabrics 
and requires similar caution. 

Nature and Uses of Muriatic Acid. 
— This is a, gas produced by treat- 
ing common salt with sulphuric acid 
or oil of vitriol. It is readily soluble 
in water, and this solution is the 
commercial article. It is poisonous, 
has a sharp, keen smell and taste, and 
when inhaled causes suffocation. One 
part of water will absorb about 450 
times its own bulk of the gas. It is 
a powerful corrosive, and must be 
provided with a glass or rubber stop- 
per, or the cork must be smeared 
with vaseline, else it will eat the cork 
and evaporate. It corrodes metals. 

To Apply Muriatic Acid. — This 
acid is especially useful to remove red 
rust stains. To apply, lay the fabric 
containing the spot over an earthen 
dish of boiling water. Allow a drop 



of the acid to fall on the stain from 
a glass stopper or medicine dropper. 
This will cause the stain to fade to a 
light yellow. Drop the cloth immedi- 
ately into the water and rinse. Re- 
peat if necessary. As soon as the 
stain disappears, rinse the article and 
dip it into ammonia water. This will 
neutralize any acid that was not re- 
moved by rinsing. 

Muriatic acid may be used on linen 
or cotton fabrics, but not on silks or 
woolens. It can be employed on cer- 
tain fast colors, but it is advisable to 
test a sample of the goods before ap- 
plying. 

To Remove Acid Stains. — The above 
acids and others wiU themselves stain 
certain colored goods, especially blues 
and blacks. To remove these stains 
apply aqua ammonia with a camel's- 
hair brush or sponge. If this is not 
effective apply chloroform. Either of 
these may be used on linen, cotton, 
silk, or wool. 

Nature and Uses of Ammonia. — It 
is interesting to note that the name 
" ammonia " was formerly applied to 
common salt on account of the fact 
that salt was anciently found in the 
Libyan Desert near the Temple of 
Jupiter Ammon. Ammonia occurs 
as a colorless transparent gas with a 
pungent odor. It is readily soluble 
in water, 1 part of water absorbing 
about 500 volumes of the gas. A so- 
lution of ammonia in water is called 
aqua ammonia or " spirits of Harts- 
horn." Preparations sold for house- 
hold purposes vary greatly in 
strength. Smelling salts or sal vola- 
tile is a carbonate of ammonia. Am- 
monia combines with acids to form 
soluble salts. Hence it is useful in 
removing fruit stains and other acids. 
It may be applied freely to all ordi- 
nary fabrics; to remove stains made 
by strong acids, red wine, iodine, ni- 
trate of silver, and also the stains of 
sea water and cod-liver oil. 

Uses of Alcohol. — Alcohol, as is 
well known, is a pure, colorless liquid 
with a burning taste. It burns easily, 
has a strong affinity for water, and 
dissolves many substances. Pure al- 



PREPARATIONS FOR WASH DAY 



15» 



cohol Is called absolute or "anhy- 
drous" alcohol, but the commercial 
article varies from " proof spirits," 
which contains about SO per cent of 
alcohol by volume, to " cologne spir- 
its," which contains from 93 to 95 per 
cent. 

The solvent quality of alcohol makes 
it useful to remove stains in silk, 
woolen, and other delicate fabrics, 
provided they are soluble and do not 
require chemical treatment. It may 
be mixed with benzine or aqua am- 
monia or both. It is most effective 
when the stains are fresh. 

Uses of Chloroform. — Chloroform 
is a colorless liquid with a, sweetish 
taste and characteristic odor. Its 
anaesthetic properties are well known. 
It . Is slightly soluble in water, but 
readily so in alcohol and ether. It 
has the property of dissolving cam- 
phor, resin, wax, rubber, iodine, and 
other substances. Chloroform may 
be employed to restore certain colors 
that were removed by acids after the 
acids have been destroyed by the ap- 
plication of ammonia. 

Uses of Turpentine. — Turpentine is 
a resinous oil obtained from cone- 
bearing trees. The commercial arti- 
cle is a solution of resin in a volatile 
oil. Turpentine has a well-known 
spicy odor, a bitter taste, and burns 
freely. Oil of turpentine, obtained 
by distillation, is a colorless liquid 
with a peculiar odor; it is insoluble 
in water, but dissolves readily in al- 
cohol or ether. It also dissolves 
resin, gummy substances, oils, rubber, 
iodine, sulphur, and phosphorus. 
Hence its usefulness in treating stains 
produced by such substances. The 
commercial article is sold in various 
grades, and is used extensively in 
the preparation of paints and var- 
nishes. 

To Apply Turpentine. — Turpentine 
■will remove paint, grease, or vaseline 
stains without injury to the most 
delicate fabric. Apply sufficient tur- 
pentine to soak the paint or grease 
spot. Use a camel's-hair brush, a 
common pen or feather, or, for large 
spots, a sponge. 



Or apply by dropping from a glass 
bottle. 

The turpentine may be mixed with 
alcohol, salts of lemon, or sulphuric 
ether. 

Kinds and Uses of Ahsorbents. — 
Various absorbents are redommended 
to remove grease, wax, blood, ink, 
mildew, and other stains from fab- 
rics. Among the most useful of these 
are brown paper and blotting paper. 
Others are chalk, French chalk (which 
is not chalk but ground soapstone), 
pipe clay, fuller's earth, magnesia, 
gypsum, common starch, and melted 
tallow. 

One of the quickest and best meth- 
ods to remove grease (especially when 
it is fresh) and spots of wax is to 
lay over the spot a piece of common 
brown paper and press with a hot 
iron. Care must be taken not to use 
an iron hot enough to change the 
colors of colored silks and print 
goods. If convenient the spot may 
be previously covered with French 
chalk. 

Or any of the above powders may 
be applied dry. The grease or wax 
will be taken up more quickly if held 
near a sto\»fe or pressed with a hot 
iron. 

For mildew, rub the spots with wet 
soap, rub in pipe clay, fuller's earth, 
or chalk, cover thickly with the same, 
and expose to sunshine. 

For blood stains use cornstarch. 
A mixture of 6 ounces of fuller's 
earth, 1 ounce of pipe clay, 1 ounce 
of French chalk, J ounce of oil of 
turpentine, J ounce of alcohol, and IJ 
ounces of' melted castile soap is high- 
ly recommended. 

Chlorine and Uses of Bleaching 
Powder. — This is the chloride of lime 
prepared by exposing damp slacked 
lime to chlorine gas. A good, fresh 
article contains 35 to 30 per cent of 
effective chlorine, which is » power- 
ful bleaching agent. It decomposes 
and deteriorates with time, setting 
free hydrochloric acid, to which the 
bleaching is due. This is a pale- 
yellow gas that has the property 
of decomposing various kinds of col- 



160 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



oring matter. Bleaching powder is 
one of tlie surest agents for removing 
ink stains or writing from white tex- 
tile fabric or paper. Cover the spots 
with dry bleaching powder and mois- 
ten with a weak mineral acid, as acetic 
or tartaric acid. This method is not 
suitable for colored goods, as the 
bleaching powder would remove the 
colors. Afterwards neutralize the acid 
by applying aqua ammonia or hypo- 
sulphite of soda. 

To Make and Use Tavelle Water. — 
Chloride of lime or Javelle water is a 
colorless liquid that may be prepared 
from bleaching powder. It is much 
used for taking fruit and other stains 
from white textile fabrics and for 
bleaching wood and straw. For fruit 
stains dissolve J pound of chloride of 
lime in 2 quarts of boiling water. 
Add to this 1 pound of sal soda. Dis- 
solve, settle, and pour off the clear 
liquid. This is Javelle water. Apply 
with a brush, rinse in clear water, 
and dip in ammonia water to neu- 
tralize the acid. 

Or dissolve 2 ounces of chloride of 
lime in 1 quart of boiling water. Im- 
merse the fabric in this for S min- 
utes. Remove, add 4 quarts of cold 
water, and soak the article for 3 
to 13 hours, depending upon the 
strength of the fabric. This is heroic 
treatment, and should only be used 
on coarser articles, as duck, canvas, 
and the like, as it tends to rot the 
fabric. Afterwards immerse in a so- 
lution of 4 ounces of hyposulphite of 
soda to 1 gallon of water to neutral- 
ize the acid. Rinse in clear water and 
wash in soapsuds. 

Nature of Gasoline. — Gasoline is a 
product of the distillation of petro- 
leum. The first liquid that passes 
over in the distillation of petroleum 
is crude naphtha. By redistillation 
this is separated into gasoline and 
the A, B, and C grades of naphtha. 
Gasoline is very commonly used for 
domestic heating and cooking in 
stoves especially prepared for the pur- 
pose, and also for the production of 
power in gasoline engines. It is high- 
ly inflammable and explosive. It gives 



off under ordinary temperature a vol- 
atile gas which, by contact with 
flame, or a hot stove, wUl ignite at a 
distance of several feet from the 
liquid gasoline. Great caution must, 
therefore, be exercised in its use. 

Benzine is a substance similar to 
gasoline, and may be used for spong- 
ing fabrics in the same manner. 

How to TJse Grasoline. — Employed 
by the following methods gasoline 
will thoroughly cleanse wool, silk, vel- 
vet, and other fabrics of animal fibers, 
but not cotton, and will remove 
grease, paint, wax, and mud stains; 
in fact, practically all stains except 
acid ones, without injury to the tex- 
ture or colors of the fabric. Dirt and 
other impurities removed will sink to 
the bottom and can be removed by 
straining through cheese cloth. Hence 
the same gasoline may be used again 
and again. The best results are ob- 
tained by using a fairly large quan- 
tity of gasoline and soaking and 
washing the articles in it the same as 
in water. The cost of cleaning with 
gasoline is much less than is charged 
by a professional cleaner, and also 
much less than replacing the articles. 
Hence it pays to purchase the best 
gasoline in five-gallon cans, and to 
provide and set aside two or three 
covered earthenware jars in which to 
use it. 

Cleaning with gasoline should be 
done preferably out of doors, or if 
indoors, by daylight, and never in the 
vicinity of a hot stove, lamp, or other 
flame. Care must be taken that 
matches are not accidentally lighted 
in its vicinity. 

First, shake and brush the articles 
to remove dust and dirt. Remove 
rubber dress shields or other pieces of 
rubber, as they wiU be spoiled. Tack 
small articles together and wash larger 
ones singly in an earthenware jar 
filled with gasoline and allow them to 
soak for an hour or more. If the jar 
can be put in a pan which is sur- 
rounded with hot water (but not on 
a stove or near any open flame), the 
gasoline vrill do its work quicker and 
better and wiU be less disagreeable 



PREPARATIONS FOR WASH DAY 



161 



for the hands. After soaking, work 
the articles about, rubbing carefully 
between the fingers, or rub the spots 
with a toothbrush or nailbrush hav- 
ing fairly soft bristles. Or dip the 
brush into a small can of gasoline 
set into a pan of hot water. Squeeze 
the gasoline out of the garments and 
put them into a second jar, into 




" Cleaning with Gasoline Out of Doors." 

which pour fresh gasoline, meantime 
putting other articles to soak in the 
first jar. A third jar may be used 
if necessary. After rinsing in the 
second or third jar squeeze the gar- 
ments quite dry, stretch carefully to 
their proper shape, and thoroughly 
evaporate by airing them on a line, 
and afterwards pressing them with a 
hot iron. Hang coats or waists on a 
coat hanger to keep in shape while 
drying. 

Pour the gasoline back into the can 
.through a funnel covered with several 
thicknesses of cheese cloth. 

Or, to remove a spot or a stain, 
stretch the fabric over a piece of 
blotting paper and pour the gasoline 
around it. Sponge from the center 
outwardly until the spot is removed. 
Take a dry cloth and continue rub- 



bing in the same manner with light 
strokes until the article is dry. 

Or sprinkle a little powdered gyp- 
sum over the spot, extending beyond 
the moistened part. When this is 
brushed off, the spot will be removed. 

Or, if a benzine stain, rub French 
chalk into . it with a piece of flannel, 
sprinkle a layer of the chalk over it, 
and let stand for twenty-four hours. 

Cleansing Mixtures. — Dissolve 6 
drams of gum camphor in 2 ounces 
of alcohol. Mix separately 3 drams 
of pipe clay with 4 ounces of beef's 
gall. Also mix separately J ounce 
each of borax, saltpeter, and honey. 
Shave into a saucepan large enough 
to hold all these ingredients 8 ounces 
of castile or other good hard white 
soap, add the mixture of gall and 
pipe clay, and melt with gentle heat, 
stirring constantly. Remove from the 
fire, and when cool stir in first the 
saltpeter, borax, and honey, then the 
camphor and alcohol. Lastly add J 
ounce of spirits of turpentine and J 
ounce of sulphuric ether. Pour quick- 
ly into a black glass bottle, cork 
tightly, and store in a dark place. 
This preparation contains no free al- 
kali, will not injure any ordinary 
fabric, and contains solvents for prac- 
tically every kind of spot or stain 
likely to be met with in garments. 
It is suitable for silks, woolens, and 
Indeed all ordinary fabrics. 

Or shave 4 ounces of castile or 
other hard white soap and dissolve in 
2 quarts of boiling water. Remove 
from the fire, and when cold add i 
ounce of saltpeter, stirring until dis- 
solved. Strain through cheese cloth, 
let the mixture settle, and take off the 
scum with a skimmer. Now add J 
pint of ammonia and bottle and cork 
tightly. Keep in an earthenware jug 
with a tight cork. This is the so-called 
" Magic Annihilator," which is recom- 
mended to remove grease and oil 
from all kinds of dress goods and 
other fabrics without injuring them, 
and for various other purposes, as 
scouring floors, cleaning windows, 
metals, etc. It must not be used on 
woodenware, as it will remove paint, 



162 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



for which purpose it is especially 
recommended. 

Pour this liquid on both sides of 
the spot or article to be cleaned. 
Scrub with a stiff brush, sponge, or 
loof, and rinse with cold water. Re- 
peat if necessary. To clean silverware 
and other metals mix with whiting. 

Chemical Soap. — Shave 1 pound of 
I Castile soap, add J pint of alcohol, i 
pint of soft water, J ounce of aqua- 
fortis, J ounce of lampblack, i ounce 
of saltpeter, J ounce of potash, J 
ounce of camphor, 1 ounce of pow- 
dered cinnamon. Dissolve the soap in 
water, stir in the potash and saltpe- 
ter, remove from the fire, add the 
other ingredients, and stir until cool. 
Pour into molds and put away in a 
dry place to season. The longer it is 
seasoned before using the better. 

Or shave 1 ounce of castile soap, 
cover with 1 pint of Water, and boil 
untU dissolved. Stir in 3 ounces of 
sal soda, i ounce of starch, i ounce of 
borax. Pour into molds to cool and 
harden. Apply with a rag, sponge, or 
loof to remove grease, paint, tar, etc. 

Or dissolve 1 ounce of castile soap 
with gentle heat in about twice its 
own bulk of water. Add enough hot 
water to make 1 pint; let cool slight- 
ly. Stir in 1 teaspoonful of saltpeter 
and 3 ounces of aqua ammonia. 

Or mix 3 ounces of alcohol, i ounce 
of bay rum, 1 ounce of oil of winter- 
green, J ounce of aqua ammonia, | 
ounce of chloroform, and 1 ounce of 
sulphuric ether. Cork tightly and let 
stand over night. Add 1 ounce of 
pulverized borax and 1 gallon of de- 
odorized gaspline. Shake well and 
cork tightly. 

Or mix i ounce of borax and J 
ounce of camphor in a quart fruit 
jar. Pour over them 1 pint of boil- 
ing water. Cork tightly and let stand 
until cool.' Now add J pint of alco- 
hol, shake well, and cork tightly. Use 
to sponge woolen dress goods, men's 
clothing, felt hats,' and the like. 

Or dissolve 1 ounce of castile soap 
scraped in 1 quart of boiling water. 
Let cool and add J ounce of glycerin, 
i ounce of alcohol, and J ounce of 



sulphuric ether. Bottle, cork tightly, 
and keep in a dark place. Use to 
sponge all sorts of dress goods, and 
especially to remove grease spots. 

Or mix equal parts of turpentine, 
benzine, and chloroform. 

Scouring Mixtures. — Mix 3 pounds 
of fuller's earth, J pound of pipe clay, 
2 ounces of powdered French chalk. 
Mix separately 1 ounce of rectified 
spirits of turpentine, 1 ounce of alco- 
hol, and 13 ounces of soap jelly. Stir 
the two mixtures together to a stiff 
paste and place in tightly covered 
fruit jars. 

Or mix equal parts of fuller's earth 
and soap jelly. To apply, moisten 
the cloth with warm water and cover 
with this mixture, rubbing it well 
into the goods. Let stand until dry, 
then scour with a stiff brush and 
warm water. 

Or mix 1 ounce of baking soda, 1 
ounce of prepared chalk, 1 ounce of 
pumice stone, and 1 ounce of sifted 
wood ashes. Apply this mixture with 
a piece of raw white potato. 

Or moisten 1 ounce of fuller's earth 
with lemon juice; add J ounce of 
pearlash and 1 ounce of yeUow soap 
melted with as little water as possi- 
ble. Mix the whole and knead into a 
stiff paste. Roll into balls the size of 
marbles and put them in the sun to 
dry. Moisten the spot with warm 
water and scour with one of these 
balls; then put in the sun to dry. 
Afterwards rinse with clear water. 

Nature of the Fabric. — The treat- 
ment of spots and stains depends not 




She. 



!p Silkworm Alpaca 




Seal 



Camel 



Ostrich 



" With Animal Fibers Cautioh is Necessary." 

only upon the kind of stain, but also 
upon the nature of the fabric. Fab- 



PREPARATIONS FOR WASH DAY 



163 



rics are of two principal classes : vege- 
table fibers, which include linen and 
cotton goods; and animal fibers, which 
include wool, silk, furs, feathers, and 
the like. All vegetable fibers contain 
cellulose, a hard, woodlike substance 




"All Vegetable Fibers Contain Cellulose." 

that offers a strong resistance to the 
action of chemical agents, and is not 
easily injured by rubbing. Hence 
stronger acids and alkalies and more 
vigorous rubbing can be employed 
upon cottons and linens than upon 
wool, silk, or other animal fibers. 

In the treatment of wool, caution is 
necessary from the fact that the fibers 
of wool have numerous minute hook- 
like projections which, by rubbing the 
fibers together, or by alternate expan- 
sion and contraction (as when plunged 
from hot water to cold water, and 
back again), become interlaced in 
such a way as to warp fabric in all 
directions. This is what causes the 
shrinking of woolen goods, so much 
dreaded by the laundress. Hence 
wool should not be rubbed or wrung 
out in the usual way, nor subjected 
to either very hot or very cold water. 
The water should be lukewarm or not 
too warm to bear the hands com- 
fortably, and aU washing and rinsing 
waters should be kept at a nearly 
imiform temperature. 

A similar caution in handling silk 
is due to the delicacy of the fabric. 
Silk, if rubbed or wrung out, tends 
to crack or to show permanent wrin- 
kles. It should accordingly be han- 
dled with care, and only the finer 
grades of soap should be employed 
in cleaning it. 



KINDS OF SPOTS AND STAINS 

The principal stains and spots the 
laundress has to do with are tea, cof- 
fee, and wine stains, iron rust, and 
ink; paint and tar, grass stains and 
mildew, blood stains, grease spots, 
and mud stains. These should all be 
removed from washable articles be- 
fore sending them to the laundry. 
Hence many housekeepers set apart 
Tuesday for wash day, and take oc- 
casion Monday to sort the wash and 
carefully remove all stains, and sponge 
or scrub or dry-clean any articles 
that may require it. 

Grass Stains. — White and other 
light-colored summer gowns, duck 
and flannel trousers, and children's 
garments frequently show grass stains 
in summer. The green stain is pro- 
duced by chlorophyll, a coloring mat- 
ter present in growing vegetation. 
This, when exposed to the action of 
the air, becomes changed into chloro- 
phyllan, which is insoluble in water. 
Grass stains when fresh may be re- 
moved by sponging with alcohol, biit 
after the chlorophyll has been con- 
verted into chlorophyllan, the action 
of alcohol will leave an insoluble 
brown stain in place of the green. 
Neither oxalic nor muriatic acid is ef- 
fective with grass stains, but a hot 
solution of tartaric acid changes the 
green stain to light brown, that yields 
readily to boiling soapsuds in the 
laundry. If tartaric acid is not at 
band, wet the stain and apply cream 
of tartar or salts of lemon. 

Or dissolve cream of tartar in boil- 
ing water and apply hot. 

Or rub grass stains with moleisses 
and wash in clear, soft water without 
soap. Do not use oxalic or muriatic 
acid. 

Tea and Coffee Stains. — These, 
when fresh, all yield readily to the 
action of boiling water, especially if 
the fabric be stretched tightly and 
the boiling water poured upon it with 
some force. If stains have been 
neglected and fixed by soap in the 
laundry, it may be necessary to ap- 
ply dilute oxalic acid or chloride of 



164 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



lime, or to treat them with lemon 
juice and salt, salts of lemon, and 
other remedies, afterwards exposing 
the artide to the air and smishine. 
The stains of berries, especially of 
blackberries, and of plimis and 
peaches, are very refractory. Hence, 
if possible, these should have imme- 
diate treatment. 

Faint. — Paint and resin may be 
quickly dissolved by the action of 
turpentine, benzine, chloroform, or 
sulphurous ether, the treatment de- 
pending upon the nature of the fab- 
ric. Tar may be rubbed with lard 
and afterwards removed by washing. 
Oils may be dissolved by alcohol, 
ether, or spirits of turpentine. For 
colored goods, these may all be com- 
bined with ammonia and glycerin. 

Mildew. — Mildew is a fungous 
growth of certain parasitic, plants. 
It forms on cloth that is exposed to 
dampness in patches of various col- 
ors, red, black, yellow, or even green. 
Various substances may be used to 
prevent its forming. Mildew pro- 
duces a stain which is very refrac- 
tory. The treatment ■ depends upon 
the nature of the fabric and the ex- 
tent and depth of the stain, and varies 
from simple remedies, such as soap, 
lemon juice and salt, and the like, to 
chloride of lime and the more power- 
ful acids. Other substances recom- 
mended are French chalk, starch, and 
buttermilk. These must, of course, 
be used with proper caution and a 
due regard to the liability of injury 
to the fabric. They should be after- 
wards assisted by the bleaching agen- 
cies of air and sunshine. 

To Prevent Mildew. — Canvas, duck, 
and similar fabrics used for awnings, 
tents, and the like may be preserved 
against mildew by first soaking them 
in strong suds made by dissolving i 
pound of hard white or yellow soap 
in 3 gallons of water, and afterwards 
immersing the fabric, for a period of 
24 hours, in a solution of 1 pound 
of alum dissolved in 1 gallon of 
water. 

To Remove Mildew. — Dissolve 1 
ounce of chloride of^lime in 1 pint of 



boiling water; then add 3 pints of 
cold water. Soak the article in this 
from 3 to 12 hours. Remove, rinse 
thoroughly, and send to the laundry. 
If the chloride of lime is not thor- 
oughly washed out the fabric may be 
in j ured. 

Or rub the spot with good yellow 
^oap, wash, and while wet rub pow- 
dered chalk into it and cover with a 
layer of chalk. Lay the article on the 
grass in the sun and sprinkle clear 
water over it. Repeat this treatment 
until the mildew is removed. 

Or mix J pound of soap jeUy with 
2 ounces of starch, 1 ounce of salt, 
and the juice of 1 lemon. Pour over 
the stain, or apply with a brush. 

Iron Bust. — Stains from iron rust 
(or " iron mold," as they are some- 
times called) yield readily to both 
muriatic acid and oxalic acid, but as 
the latter is less injurious to fabrics, 
a hot solution of it gives most satis- 
faction. Other substances recom- 
mended to remove iron rust are salts 
of lemon, lemon juice, salt, cream of 
tartar, and various admixtures of 
these. In all cases wet the stained 
fabric, apply the cleansing substance, 
and hold in the steam of a teakettle, 
or expose to direct sunshine, spread- 
ing on the grass when convenient un- 
tU the stain is removed. Repeat the 
treatment as often as is necessary. 

To make salts of lemon, mix equal 
parts of cream of tartar and pow- 
dered salt of sorrel. Wet the spot, 
and apply dry salts to the wet sur- 
face. 

Or mix lemon juice with salt and 
cover thickly. 

Or use equal parts of cream of tar- 
tar and oxalic acid, or equal parts of 
cream of tartar and salt. 

To Remove Whitewash. — To re- 
move whitewash stains apply strong 
vinegar. 

Vaseline Stains. — ^Wash in warm 
soapsuds, rinse, and apply chlorinated 
soda. 

Wax Stains. — ^Apply alcohol or 
naphtha with a camel's-hair brush, 
sponge, or piece of rag. 

Or hold the stains within an inch 



PREPARATIONS FOR WASH DAY 



165 



or two of a, red-hot iron, and rub 
with a soft, clean rag. 

Or lay over them a piece of brown 
paper, and iron with a hot iron. 

faint Stains. — Saturate the stains 
with gasoline and rub with a small 
sponge or flannel rag. Continue un- 
til the paint is absorbed, and rub with 
a clean cloth until dry. 

Or saturate the spot for some 
hours with turpentine, and afterwards 
rub the article between the hands, 
when the paint will crumble and can 
be dusted away without injury to the 
fabric. 

Iodine Stains. — As iodine is often 
applied externally to the skin, it fre- 
quently stains cotton and linen gar- 
ments. To prevent this add a few 
drops of liquid carbolic acid to the 
iodine. » 

To remove the stains when fresh, 
dip the spots in aqua ammonia dilut- 
ed with warm water. 

Or soak the stains in a strong solu- 
tion of hyposulphite of soda and water. 

Or wet the fabric and cover with 
hyposulphite of soda untU the stains 
are removed. 

Nutgall Inks. — Formerly black ink 
was usually made of green vitriol dis- 
solved in an infusion of gallnuts. 
Inks of this sort stain paper perma- 
nently and speedily, rapidly darken 
for a while, but eventually become 
yeUow or brown with age. These old- 
fashioned inks were easily removed 
with oxalic and mineral acids, but the 
modern inks contain, in addition to 
tannate of iron (produced by the ac- 
tion of nutgalls upon copperas), ani- 
line blue, indigo, and other dye stuffs 
that are not removable by these acids. 
The first inks of this sort were placed 
upon the market about the middle of 
the nineteenth century. Many of the 
recipes still found in print claiming 
to remove all sorts of ink spots were 
originally published more than fifty 
years ago. All such recipes must be 
regarded with suspicion. No single 
recipe can be given that will remove 
stains made by every kind of ink. 

Chrome-logwood Ink. — Anothe; 
modern ink known as the chrome-log- 



wood ink is produced by the action 
of a solution of logwood upon potas- 
sium chromate. This is a deep pur- 
ple ink, that turns darker after being 
exposed to the air, and has the ad- 
vantage over iron-gall inks that it 
will not fade. Logwood is also com- 
bined with an extract of alum or 
chloride of aluminum. The best 
French copying inks are of this class. 
These inks may be removed by muri- 
atic acid, which first turns the spot 
red. This acid must not, however, be 
used on stylographic inks containing 
eosin or nigrosine, as it will turn 
them Into an indelible dye. 

Stylographic Ink. — ^This is a mod- 
ern ink made by dissolving in water 
the coal-tar product known as nigro- 
sine. It is used for stylographic pens 
on account of its fluidity, as it con- 
tains no sediment. This ink is of a 
deep blue-black color that does not 
change on exposure to the air and 
has little luster. It does not fade, 
and after a lapse of years is soluble 
in water. Hence if paper containing 
it is wet the color will run. The ef- 
fect upon a nigrosine ink of acids in 
certain recipes " guaranteed to re- 
move any ink spot " is to mordant or 
set the ink, rendering it insoluble and 
practically indelible. Hence it is al- 
ways advisable to moisten an ink spot 
with water, and if it blurs or smirch- 
es, thus indicating the presence of ni- 
grosine, washing soda, caustic soda, 
potash lye, or any other alkali should 
be used, but not an acid. 

Indelible Ink. — Indelible writing 
and marking inks are mostly finely 
divided carbon which, as is well 
known, offers great resistance to chem- 
ical agents. India and China inks are 
of this class. They are composed of 
carbon, chiefly lampblack or other 
soot, mixed with gum or glue. In- 
delible ink for marking textile fabrics 
is also made of nitrate of silver and 
other silver salts. 

Various other substances are em- 
ployed in ink making, but those we 
have given are the most common. 

Treatment of Ink Stains. — If the 
nature of an ink is known, the proper 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



treatment can, of course, be giyen; 
otherwise it is best to first dip the 
ink in water to test if nigrosine is 
present. 

If nigrosine is not present try oxal- 
ic acid, which will remove an old style 
iron-gall ink or decompose a modern 
iron-gall ink by removing the black 
tannate of iron, and leaving the in- 
digo and aniline blue dye stuffs as a 
stain on the fabric. If this is not 
effective, try muriatic acid. This will 
remove the stain of a logwood or 
copying ink. FoUow this with an al- 
kali to remove the effects of the acid. 

A nitrate of silver ink stain may 
be removed with cyanide of potas- 
sium, which is a deadly poison. 

Or apply a dilute solution of per- 
manganate of potash with muriatic 
acid; follow by soaking in a solution 
of hyposulphite of soda, and after- 
wards rinse in clear water. 

If all else fails, cover the spot with 
dry bleaching powder and moisten 
with dilute acetic acid. Afterwards 
apply ammonia, or dip in a solution 
of hyposulphite of soda and rinse. It 
must be borne in mind that strong 
acids and alkalies will injure the tex- 
ture of animal fibers as wool and silk 
and bleach colored fabrics. For such 
articles use pyrophosphate of soda. 

If a garment spotted with ink is 
especially valuable it would be well 
to try a series of experiments with 
the same ink on a piece of similar 
fabric. In the meantime cover the 
stain with various dry absorbents to 
take up the excess of ink. After 
these have done their work, soak the 
article in milk while the experiments 
are being made. 

Or if it is small dip it immediately 
into pure melted tallow. 

Lemon juice and salt, sour milk, 
and similar remedies are useful if 
suitable acids are not at hand, but 
cannot be depended on to do the work 
in a thorough manner. 

STAIHS ON WHITE EINEN OR COTTON 

Ink Stains. — Substances recom- 
mended for removing ink from linen 



are salts of lemon, cream of tartar, 
citric acid, oxalic acid, lemon juice, 
vinegar, salt, sour milk, and chloride 
of lime. The treatment to be em- 
ployed depends necessarily upon the 
nature of ink. 

Ink stains should be treated as 
quickly as possible, before the ink 
has had a chance to set. While fresh, 
pour over them a quantity of salt, dry 
starch, or other absorbent, and brush 
it away as it absorbs the ink. Keep 
the spots wet, and continue applying 
the absorbent until the ink is re- 
moved. 

Or keep the spots wet with milk, 
and apply dry salt until the stains 
come out. 

Or wash the stains with sour milk 
and let them soak over night. 

Or dip the stains alternately in 
strong bran water and lemon juice 
until they disappear. 

Or use equal parts cream of tartar 
and powdered salts of sorrel (salts 
of lemon), dissolved in the smallest 
possible quantity of boiling water 
and applied hot. 

Or rinse carefully in clean water 
and apply oxalic acid. If this pro- 
duces a red tinge apply dilute aqua 
ammonia. 

Or dip small articles, as laces, 
handkerchiefs, and the like, in melted 
tallow and after the stain has dis- 
appeared remove the tallow by boil- 
ing in hot soapsuds. This last is 
perhaps the simplest and best of all 
remedies. 

To Remove Marking Ink from 
Linen. — Apply fresh chloride of lime 
mixed with water. As soon as the 
color fades, dip into a solution of 
aqua ammonia or hyposulphite of 
soda, and rinse well before sending 
to the laundry. 

To Remove Indelible Ink. — Stains 
made by indelible ink containing ni- 
trate of silver may be removed by ap- 
plying chloride of copper. After- 
wards dip the article in hyposulphite 
of soda. 

Or apply a dilute solution of per- 
manganate of potash and muriatic 
acid, and foUow with hyposulphite of 



PREPARATIONS FOR WASH DAY 



167 



soda. Cyanide of potash is also used 
for this purpose. It is highly poison- 
ous. 

Or melt pure tallow and pour over 
the ink spot while hot. Remove the 
tallow by dipping in hot water; re- 
peat if necessary. This is a method 
employed by many dyers and clean- 
ers, and has the merit of not injur- 
ing the fabric. 

To Semove Printer's Ink. — Soak 
the spots in turpentine for several 
hours. Rub them in the turpentine, 
as in washing. Let dry and brush 
thoroughly with a stiff brush. 

To Eemove Iron Rust. — Use lemon 
juice, salt, and sunshine. Or a strong 
solution of oxalic acid rubbed in with 
the fingers. Or equal parts of pow- 
dered alum and salt applied dry to 
the wet fabric. 

Grass Stains. — Use tartaric acid or 
cream of tartar dissolved in boiling 
water. Apply hot. Or rub lard on 
the spot when fresh and afterwards 
wash as usual. 

Ink Stains. — Rub promptly with a 
slice of lemon. Or dip in pure melted 
tallow. Or apply a saturated solution 
of oxalic acid or dilute muriatic acid 
or salts of lemon. 

Use dilute tartaric acid for colored 
goods. If the colors fade, renew with 
dilute aqua anmionia. 

Acid Stains. — ^Wash the article and 
dip in Javelle or chlorine water. For 
'colored goods, moisten in dUute aqua 
ammonia. 

ITitrate of Silver or Nitric-acid 
Stains. — Apply iodine and rub brisk- 
ly with strong aqua ammonia. 

Or apply a dilute solution of per- 
manganate of potash and hydro- 
chloric acid. Afterwards dip in a 
solution of hyposulphite of soda and 
rinse weU. 

Uildew. — Boil in strong borax 
water. 

Iodine. — Soak for an hour or more 
in a warm solution of aqua ammonia 
and water. Then while still wet rub 
dry bicarbonate of potash into the 
stain until it is fully removed. 

Cod-liver Oil. — Add kerosene or 
aqua ammonia to the suds and boil. 



Red Wine. — Bleach with sulphur 
fumes over an inverted funnel, or dip 
in Javelle or chlorine water. 

Tannin Stains. — These may be pro- 
duced by green chestnut burs, walnut 
husks, or substances used for tanning 
leather. Dip in hot Javelle or chlorine 
water, remov^ and rinse quickly. Or 
apply a strong solution of tartaric 
acid. 

Red Stains from Colored Goods. — 
The dyes used for colored goods, red 
threads, etc., sometimes run and acci- 
dentally stain white goods. Apply 
fumes of sulphur through an inverted 
cone, or a saturated solution of ox- 
alic acid or Javelle or chlorine water. 

Mud Stains. — Dip the mud stains 
in kerosene before putting them in 
the boiler. Add kerosene to the boil- 
ing water. 

Grease Spots. — ^Apply a hot satu- 
rated solution of alum with a sponge 
or brush, or dissolve in 1 quart of 
warm water 3 ounces of aqua am- 
monia, 1 teaspoonfid of saltpeter, and 
3 ounces of caStile soap. Soak the 
spot in this liquid and sponge. 

Or moisten the spot with butter or 
olive oil and rub with chloroform. 

Hachine Grease. — Rub sal soda or 
cooking soda into the spot and pour 
boiling water through untU the spot 
is removed. 

To Dry-clean White Goods. — Small 
mud stains on a clean white skirt may 
be concealed until ready for the laun- 
dry by pipe clay or painting over with 
white water-color paint. 

Or if a clean white skirt or shirt 
waist is spattered or spotted by mud 
or soot, let it dry, scrape off with a 
penknife, and rub over the stain with 
white crayon or school chalk. 

Rub with a clean white cloth until 
the spot disappears. 

To Dry-clean Shirt Waists. — Put 4 
quarts of corn meal into a 24j-pound 
flour sack or a pillow slip. Put the 
waist into this, and rub or knead 
gently so that the meal will come in 
contact with aU parts of the fabric. 
Leave it there for a day or two, then 
shake and dust thoroughly, and press 
with a hot iron. 



168 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



To Clean Cotton Dress Skirts. — 
Mud stains may be removed from the 
bottom of a cotton dress skirt by 
folding several thicknesses of cloth, 
laying the soiled parts upon them, 
and scrubbing with a nailbrush, 'soap, 
and water. 

TO BEMOVE SIAIirS FBOU VEGE- 
TABLE riBEBS 

To Remove Stains from Linen. — 
All tea, coffee, milk, and other stains 
or spots on linen should be removed 
as quickly as possible. If they ap- 
pear on a clean tablecloth slip be- 
neath the spot a small dish contain- 
ing hot water. Let the stain rest in 
the water, and rub gently with the 
fingers until it disappears. Smooth 
the cloth by putting a folded napkin 
underneath and applying a warm 
iron, and, without having been re- 
moved from the table, it will appear 
as fresh as when first laundered. 

For strong tea stains, put a spoon- 
ful of sugar on the stain, dip into the 
water, and let it stand for a few min- 
utes. Afterwards rinse with clear 
water. 

Or, if not convenient to treat in 
this way, cover the stain with a quan- 
tity of powdered starch, let dry, and 
remove by brushing. 

When dried tea, coffee, or milk 
stains are found in table linen, rub 
the stains with butter and afterwards 
rub in hot soapsuds before launder- 
ing. 

Or apply the yolk of an egg mixed 
with a teaspoonful of glycerin. 

Or take 10 teaspoonfuls of water, 1 
teaspoonful of glycerin, and J tea- 
spoonful of aqua ammonia. Dip the 
stain in this and allow it to dry. 
Repeat several times. Afterwards 
rub the spot between the fingers, and 
before sending the article to the laun- 
dry brush or scrub away the dry resi- 
due with the edge of a knife. 

Mildew on Linen. — Mildew may be 
removed from linen as from other 
fabrics with powdered chalk, lemon 
juice, salt, and pipe clay, and after- 
wards exposing to sunlight. Wash 



the spots in soapsuds made of hard 
white or yeUow soap. Rub in pow- 
dered chalk vnth a flannel cloth, cov- 
er the spot with more chalk, and lay 
in the sun. Repeat if necessary. 

Or soak the spots in lemon juice 
and apply common salt. Afterwards 
cover with pipe clay or powdered 
chalk, or use equal parts powdered 
starch and salt. 

To Remove Ink from Linen. — 
Treatment depends upon the nature 
of the ink. Stretch the linen before 
the steam of a teakettle and brush 
with a strong solution of salts of 
lemon. 

Or use acetic or muriatic acid, not 
too strong. Rinse as soon as the ink 
disappears. Or apply salt and lemon 
juice. Or use the juice of a ripe to- 
mato. Squeeze the juice upon the 
ink and rub with the fingers. Rinse 
and apply the juice again, until the 
stain disappears. 

Linen, Harking Ink. — Apply a 
saturated solution of cyanide of po- 
tassium, rubbing with a glass rod. 
Rinse as soon as the ink disappears. 

Linen, Iron Bust and Hold. — Cov- 
er the stain with salts of lemon and 
stretch it across the steam of a tea- 
kettle or a saucepan full of boiling 
water, so that the salts of lemon will 
be gradually dissolved by the steam 
and soaked into the fabric. 

Or put a common dinner plate on 
top of a saucepan containing boiling 
water. Lay the linen over this, cover 
the stain with salts of lemon, and 
keep wet with hot water until the 
stain is removed. Afterwards rinse 
carefully in cold water. 

Or rub the spot with butter, then 
add a small quantity of potash lye, 
and again rub the spot until the stain 
has disappeared. Rinse quickly in 
cold water. 

Linen, Yellow Stains. — If linen has 
faded yellow or become stained from 
perspiration, dissolve about one table- 
spoonful of pipe clay in the water in 
which it is boiled. 

Linen, Acid Stains.— Wet the arti- 
cle, and cover it with salts of worm- 
wood. Rub the dry salt into the wet 



PEEPARATIONS FOR WASH DAY 



169 



fabric until the stain disappears. 
Afterwards rinse thoroughly. 

Or form a cone by twisting and 
pinning together a piece of paper, 
and under this light a number of old- 
fashioned brimstone matches or burn 
a bit of sulphur. Hold the stain so 
that the sulphurous-acid gas escaping 
through the cone will pass through it. 

Linen, Iodine Stains. — Dip the spot 
in cold water and hold it by the fire 
until dry. Repeat until the stain is 
removed. 

linen, Fruit and Wine Stains. — 
While fresh put a little baking soda 
or washing soda on the stain, stretch 
it tightly over a bowl or pan, and 
pour boiling water upon the stain so 
as to dissolve the soda. No fresh 
fruit, wine, tea, coffee, or other com- 
mon stain is likely to withstand this 
treatment. Let the spot sink into the 
water and soak until the water cools, 
dipping it up and down and rubbing 
with the fingers. When the water 
cools repeat, if necessary, until the 
stain disappears. 

Or rub salts of lemon upon the 
stain and soak in hot water. Or dip 
in a weak solution of chloride of lime 
with water. Afterwards rinse care- 
fully. Or rub in starch with yellow 
soap, then apply starch thickly mois- 
tened with water and expose to the 
sun. Or soak in sour buttermilk. Or 
apply oxalic acid. 

linen, Tea or Coffee Stainsr — If 
tea or coflFee stains are noticed at the 
time they are made, remove the table- 
cloth as soon as convenient, stretch 
the cloth over a pan, and pour boil- 
ing water through the stains. 

Or, if they are small and the table- 
cloth is clean, slip a saucer or small 
nappy containing boiling water un- 
der the tablecloth and let the stain 
lie in the water. Rub gently with 
the fingers until it is removed. Re- 
move the dish, put a folded napkin 
under the stain, and go over it with 
a warm iron. The cloth will then be 
as fresh as new without having been 
removed from the table. Add a little 
glycerin to the boiling water to re- 
move coffee stains. 



Or, if an old stain is found on a 
tablecloth in the laundry, first soak 
the spot in cold water without soap, 
and try to remove with boiling water 
and glycerin. If this is not effectual, 
mix the yolk of an egg with a table- 
spoonful of milk and a little warm 
water. Add a few drops of alcohol 
or chloroform, if convenient, and use 
this as soap. 

Linen, Wine Stains. — Pile a little 
dry salt on a fresh wine stain and it 
will absorb the wine. Afterwards 
rinse in boiling water. Dip old stains 
in boiling milk until removed. 

Linen, Blood Stains. — For fresh 
blood stains on white fabrics apply 
peroxide of hydrogen, which wUl im- 
mediately remove the color from th^ 
blood. This is a strong bleaching 
substance. Hence it must not be used 
on colored fabrics, and must be im- 
mediately rinsed, especially from 
woolen' goods. 

Or soak in warm water and cover 
with dry pepsin. This will digest the 
blood. 

Or moisten the stain slightly with 
water and apply a thick layer of 
common starch. Afterwards rinse in 
cold water. 

TO BEMOVE STAINS EBOU ATSmHAJ. 
FIBEBS 

To Prepare Silks for Cleaning. — 
If silk garments are to be made over 
or if the silk is much soiled, rip them, 
remove all basting threads, and stretch 
out creases and wrinkles. Brush 
thoroughly all articles, including rib- 
bons and small pieces, to remove dust 
and dirt, shake well, and stretch them 
to their original shape. Clear a wood- 
en kitchen table or an ironing board, 
and on this stretch an old linen towel, 
tacking the corners down tightly. 
Smooth the silk out flat on the towel, 
and sponge first on the wrong side, 
afterwards on the right,, applying 
with a small toothbrush or nailbrush 
or flannel cloth any of the following 
recipes that may be most convenient. 
After sponging on both sides rinse in 
clear cold water by dipping up and 



170 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



down, but without wringing or squeez- 
ing, partly dry in the shade, and press 
between two pieces of cloth, ironing 
on the wrong side with a warm, not 
hot, iron. 

Or while wet spread the sUk 
smoothly on a wooden polished sur- 




Ckar a Wooden Kitchen Table." 



face, as a varnished table top, and 
let it dry near the fire. It will then 
require no ironing. 

To Remove Grease from Silk. — For 
removing grease spots from silk, 
chloroform, French chalk, essence of 
lemon, turpentine, white clay, mag- 
nesia, yolk of egg, and benzine are all 
recommended. If possible, apply any 
of these while the grease is stiU 
warm. 

To Clean Silk and Velvet. — Sub- 
stances recommended for removing 
grease and other spots and stains 
from sUks, satins, and velvets are al- 
cohol, chloroform, benzine, turpen- 
tine, juice of raw potato, magnesia, 
French chalk, pipe clay, yolk of egg, 
and various admixtures of these. Lay 
the stained article flat on a smooth 
surface and apply the cleansing flviid 
with a small sponge, toothbrush, or 
nailbrush, unless otherwise directed, 
untU the stain is removed. Apply 
chloroform with a light, quick touch, 
using a bit of absorbent cotton or 
soft cotton rag. Dampen the grease, 
and when it disappears rub imtil dry 



with clean cloth. To use gasoline or 
benzine, wet the spot and also a 
rather large circle around it. Rub 
outward from the center vrith quick, 
firm strokes, and if the benzine leaves 
a stain hold it in the steam of a tea- 
kettle untU it disappears. 

Or rub grease spots with a limip of 
wet magnesia. This may be dusted 
off when dry. Or mix 4 ounces of 
rectified spirits of turpentine with I 
ounce of pure alcohol. Or mix 2 
ounces of essence of lemon and 1 
ounce of oil of turpentine. Or use 
turpentine alone. Or mix 2 ounces 
of alcohol, 1 ounce of French chalk, 
and S ounces of pipe clay. Apply as 
a paste to the grease spots. 

Or cover grease spots thickly with 
French chalk, lay brown paper over 
them, and smooth with a hot iron. 
The iron will melt the grease, and the 
chalk and paper will absorb it. 

Or if chalk is not at hand lay a 
piece of brown paper on the ironing 
board, lay the silk over this, place 
another piece of brown paper on top, 
and press with a hot iron, but not so 
hot as to scorch the fabric. This is 
a most effective method. 

Or apply the yolk of an egg with 
or without the addition of 12 drops 
of chloroform or a teaspoonful of al- 
cohol. Afterwards rinse with warm 
water. 

To Clean Silk with Potato Juice. 
— Grate two fair-sized dean raw po- 
tatoes into each pint of water used 
and strain through cheese cloth. Let 
the resulting liquor stand until the 
potato starch it contains settles to the 
bottom, then pour off the clear liquid 
and bottle it. Lay a washboard down 
flat, spread over this a clean cloth, 
and lay the silk upon it Apply the 
potato juice with a sponge imtil the 
silk is ctean, and afterwards rinse it 
in clear cold water. 

To Clean Silk with Gasoline. — 
Gasoline and benzine may be applied 
to silk with a sponge, but this should 
be done by daylight and never in the 
vicinity of an open fire or flame of 
any kind. These liquids are highly 
volatile, producing a gas which will 



PREPARATIONS FOR WASH DAY 



171 



ignite and explode if it comes in con- 
tact with an open flame. After cleans- 
ing with gasoline or benzine rinse the 
silk in alcohol. 

Cleansing Mixtures for Silk. — 
Make a soap jelly by dissolving pure 
Castile or other hard white soap or 
toilet soap in about four times its 
bulk of water. Take J pound of this 
soap and add 4 ounces of ammonia, 
the white of an egg, and a wineglass- 
ful of gin or tablespoonful of brandy. 
Mix thoroughly and strain through 
cheese cloth; dilute with a small 
quantity of soft soap. Spread the 
sUk smoothly on a flat surface and 
apply the mixture with a sponge or 
nailbrush to both sides, taking care 
not to crease or wrinkle the fabric. 
Rinse in cold water, adding salt and 
oxgall for colored articles. 

Black Silk. — Vairious substances 
are recommended for cleaning black 
sUks, including infusion of oxgall; 
logwood, copperas, tea, coffee, fig 
leaves, vinegar, and ammonia. The 
preparation and use of these is ex- 
plained below. 

Dust the article carefully, spread 
smooth on a flat surface, and apply, 
with a sponge or piece of flannel, a 
cold, strong infusion of black tea. 

Or use equal parts of clear cold 
coffee and soft water. Or equal parts 
of coffee and aqua ammonia. Or a 
dilute solution of aqua ammonia in 
water. 

Any left-over tea or coffee may be 
used for this purpose. Strain through 
cheese cloth to remove the dregs. 
Sponge or scrub both sides of the 
fabric, taking care not to crease it. 
Make the sUk quite wet. Smooth the 
articles carefully and press as for 
other silk fabrics. Coffee removes 
grease and renews the sUk without 
making it shiny. 

Or make a strong solution of ivy 
or fig leaves by boUing 4 ounces of 
either with 2 quarts of water down to 
a pint. Strain through cheese cloth 
and bottle for future use. Apply 
with a sponge and brush or flannel 
cloth. 

Or sponge with oxgall slightly di- 



luted with boiling water and applied 
warm. Rinse in cold water from time 
to time and continue the oxgall until 
the rinsing water is clear. 

Or make a strong solution of log- 
wood by boiling 1 ounce in 2 quarts 
of water down to 1 pint. Wash the 
silk clean, immerse in the solution 
and simmer with gentle heat for half 
an hour. Remove the silk, add J 
ounce of copperas to the solution, 
strain through cheese cloth, and dip 
the silk in it. 

Or save old kid gloves of all colors, 
and when silks require cleaning cut 
up a glove of the same color into 
small pieces and boil it in a pint of 
water a quarter of an hour. Let it 
stand twenty-four hours in a warm 
place, again raise it to a boil, strain 
through cheese cloth, and add a 
tablespoonful of alcohol. Sponge with 
this. 

Or wash the articles in gasoline, 
dipping them up and down and rub- 
bing lightly between the hands as in 
water. Care must be taken not to 
wrinkle or crease the fabric. This 
removes the dirt quickly and does not 
cause the colors to run. 

To Bemove Wax from Silk. — 
Scrape off the excess of wax from the 
surface of the fabric with a penknife. 
Apply French chalk made into a 
paste with water. Lay the sUk on a 
piece of brown paper spread over the 
ironing board, put another sheet of 
brown paper on it, and press with a 
hot iron. 

Or toast a piece of soft bread be- 
fore the fire until quite hot, but not 
burned, and rub the wax spot with 
the hot bread until cold. Take an- 
other piece, and so continue until the 
wax is removed. Afterwards rub 
with the dry bread crumbs until per- 
fectly clean. 

Silk — To Remove Faint. — Apply a 
mixture of S parts of spirits of tur- 
pentine and 1 part of essence of 
lemon with a small brush, sponge, or 
linen rag. Or apply turpentine alone. 

Silk — To Remove Tar. — Rub lard 
on the tar, and afterwards wash with 
soapsuds. 



172 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



Silk, Stains of Sea Water. — Sponge 
with dilute aqua ammonia and water. 

Silk, Acid Stains. — If the color has 
been taken out by acid stains, apply 
aqua ammonia. 

To Remove Acid Stains from Vio- 
let Silk. — First apply tincture of 
iodine, and immediately afterwards 
cover the spot with hyposulphite of 
soda dissolved in water. Hang in the 
shade to dry. 

To Clean Velvet. — ^First dust the vel- 
vet thoroughly, using for this purpose 
an old piece of rolled-up crape. Sponge 
with benzine or gasoline, same as silk. 
Stretch the velvet right Side up over 
a basin of boiling water so that the 
steam must pass through it. While 
thus stretched brush with a whisk 
broom in the direction of the nap. 
The time spent depends upon the 
condition of the velvet, but if patient- 
ly continued the result will be entire- 
ly satisfactory. Any ingenious person 
can arrange a contrivance to hold the 
velvet in place while brushing, or an 
assistant may do so. 

Or dampen a newspaper and set it 
in a hot oven until it steams. Lay 
this on the ironing board, cover it 
with a folded cotton cloth, and lay 
the velvet on it. WhUe the steam is 
rising, brush the velvet against the 
pile. 

Or heat a flatiron, turn it .face up- 
ward, and lay a wet cotton cloth on 
it. Lay the velvet, nap up, over the 
iron, and brush while steaming. 

To Revive Faded Velvet or Flush. 
— Brush slightly with a sponge dipped 
in chloroform. 

To Clean Satin. — Sponge satin neck- 
ties and other small articles with a 
weak solution of borax, following the 
grain, and afterwards iron on the 
wrong side. 

To Clean White Silk.— White silk 
may be washed in soapsuds the same 
as other delicate white fabrics, being 
careful not to rub or squeeze the fab- 
ric so as to cause creases or wrinkles. 

Or it may be washed in gasoline, 
or dry-cleaned by rubbing or dusting 
it with magnesia and laying it away 
for twp or three days in a, paper bag 



covered with magnesia, afterwards 
brushing it with a soft, heavy brush. 

Naphtha soap will remove most 
stains from white silk, including paint 
stains. 

To Bleach White Silk. — When 
white silk articles have become yellow 
from the laundry or from being packed 
away, dip them in a solution of one 
tablespoonful of ammonia to a quart 
of warm water. Squeeze out this solu- 
tion, and rinse in bluing water until 
fully restored. Hang in the shade to 
dry and while damp press between 
dry cloths on the wrong side. 

Or dissolve 4 ounces of salt and 4 
ounces of oxalic acid in 6 quarts of 
water. Immerse the silk in this solu- 
tion until it is bleached white. This 
will require a half hour to an hour 
or more. Rinse thoroughly. 

Or the silk, after having been laun- 
dered, may be bleached with the 
fumes of brimstone. Suspend a large- 
sized paper flour sack upside down, 
either out of doors on a still day or 
in an outhouse, and put in it the arti- 
cle to be bleached, attaching it to the 
sides of the bag with pins or basting 
thread. Put burning coke or char- 
coal on an iron pan, cover with flow- 
ers of sulphur, and invert a tin fun- 
nel over it so that the fumes will pass 
up into the bag. Afterwards sponge 
the article carefully and expose to air 
and sunshine until the odor has 
passed off. 

To Remove Stains from Colored 
Silks. — To remove acid stains, apply 
liquid ammonia with a brush or soft 
rag, taking care not to rub the fabric, 
as the ammonia may cause the colors 
to fade or rim. Should this happen, 
afterwards apply chloroform to re- 
store the color. 

Or cover the spot with cooking 
soda or magnesia and moisten with 
clear water. 

TO CLEAN COLORED GOODS 

Alkali Stains. — Moisten the spot 
with vinegar or tartaric acid, and af- 
terwards apply chloroform to restore 
its color. 



PREPARATIONS VOR WASH DAY 



173 



Grease Spots. — Cover the spot witi. 
fuller's earth, pipe clay, or French 
chalk. Place over this a layer of 
brown paper and press with a hot iron. 

Truit and Wine Stains. — ^Wet with 
a mixture of equal parts of alcohol 
and ammonia. Afterwards sponge 
gently with alcohol until the stain is 
removed. 

Or rub the spot with soap, and ap- 
ply chloride of soda with a camel's- 
hair brush, rinsing quickly and thor- 
oughly. 

Wax Stains. — Scrape off the sur- 
plus of wax from the surface of the 
fabric, dissolve with alcohol, and re- 
move by rubbing gently with a clean 
flannel rag or pressing with a hot 
iron through brown paper. 

Oil Stains. — Cover with French 
chalk, pipe clay, or fuller's earth, and 
wet with water to a thin paste. Let this 
dry on the fabric and remove by 
brushing. Repeat if necessary. 

Mud Stains. — Let the mud dry 
thoroughly, and then remove as much 
as possible by brushing. When fully 
dry, cover with a mixture of salt and 
flour and keep in a dry place. 

If the stains are extensive place the 
garment in a large paper flour sack 
with a quantity of salt and flour well 
mixed, shake vigorously, tie up the 
sack, and allow it to hang behind the 
stove for a few days. Afterwards 
shake out the dust and press. 

Or, while the stains are wet, cover 
thickly with cornstarch and brush 
away until the stain has disappeared. 
When dry, make a thick paste of 
cornstarch with warm water, lay over 
the stains, and brush off when dry. 
Repeat if necessary. 

Kust Stains. — ^Apply a solution of 
salts of lemon. 

Ink Stains. — Apply 1 teaspoonful . 
of dilute oxalic acid to 6 ounces of 
water. Or moisten the spots with a 
strong solution of citric acid. Or dip 
the spots in milk and cover with salt. 
If the colors are affected, restore 
them with aqua ammonia and chloro- 
form. 

Tar. — Rub lard over the tar and 
wash , in soapsuds. Or apply oil of 



turpentine, rub with soap, and wash. 
Or soak in olive or sweet oil for 
twenty-four hours. Afterwards wash 
in soapsuds. 

To Dry-elean Lace. — Stretch the 
lace carefully on a thick piece of 
wrapping paper, fastening the edges 
with pins. Sprinkle it quite thickly 
with calcined magnesia. Cover with 
another piece of wrapping paper, and 
place it under a pile of books or other 
heavy weight for three or four days. 
The magnesia can then be shaken off 
and the lace will appear like new. It 
will not only be clean, but the edges 
will be in perfect condition. Calcined 
magnesia is very cheap, and this meth- 
od is well worth trying. 

Or stretch the lace, if not too much 
soiled, on a piece of cloth, pin all the 
points, and work over it with the soft 
part of a loaf of fine bread, not too 
dry, and afterwards shake out the 
crumbs. 

Or use bread crumbs, rubbing them 
over the lace with a soft cloth, con- 
stantly using fresh crumbs, and chang- 
ing the cloth as it becomes soiled. 

Or dust a mixture . of flour and 
magnesia into the fiber of the lace, 
and rub it with a soft cloth. After- 
wards put the lace under pressure for 
a few hours. 

To Clean Gold and Silver Lace. — 
Stretch the lace and tack it down 
on a piece of woolen cloth, following 
the outline of the pattern carefully 
with basting thread. Brush it thor- 
oughly free from dust. Sprinkle over 
it a mixture of dry crumbs or stale 
bread, and powdered laundry blue. 
Rub gently with a piece of flannel un- 
tU clean. 

Or use burnt aliun, pulverized to a 
fine powder, and sifted through cheese 
cloth. Apply with a fine, soft brush. 

Or sponge with alcohol. After- 
wards polish with a piece of red vel- 
vet. 

TO DEY-CIEAN MEN'S 6AEMENTS 

To Clean Men's Clothes. — Hang the 
garments on a line, beat them with 
a carriage whip or piece of rubber 



174 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



hose, and brush them thoroughly with 
a stiff brush. To remove spots, place 
several thicknesses of soft cloth, like 
an old towel, under the spot, moisten 
it with water, and scour with any 
good cleanser, or moisten the spot 
thoroughly with a liquid cleanser and 
rub it hard. Use for this purpose 
a loof, a stiff, fibrous sponge, cost- 
ing about ten cents. This is rough 
enough to scrub with vigor if the 
goods will stand it, or it can be used 
more gently on delicate goods. It 
leaves no lint as cloth does, but is 
stiffer than a sponge and can be easily 
washed and dried after being used. 
Or use one or more small scrubbing 
brushes of varying degrees of stiff- 
ness. 

To Remove Spots. — First hold the 
garment up to the light to see if 
there is any surface dirt; if there is, 
scrape off with a sharp knife what 
can be removed (taking care not to 
injure the weave of the garment) be- 
fore wetting the spot in water, cleans- 
ing fluid, or any sort of chemical. 
Next apply the cleanser and rub well, 
so that the dirt when dissolved may 
be forced through into the pad be- 
neath. Rub with a piece of woolen 




"Spread the Garment RiglU Side Up." 

cloth folded into a tight pad. Use 
plenty of " elbow grease." The secret 
of success lies in hard rubbing. 

To Press Men's Clothes. — Spread 
the garment right side up on an iron- 



ing board, lay over it a cotton cloth 
wrvmg out of warm water containing 
about 1 tablespoonful of aqua am- 
monia to 3 pints of water, and iron 
the wet cloth until both the cloth and 
the garment are perfectly dry. This 
prevents the garment from having a 
shiny appearance. 

Black Dye for Kenovatlng:. — Put 8 
ounces of logwood chips in a porce- 
lain kettle, cover with 2 quarts of soft 
water, and let stand over night. Boil 
30 minutes, strain through cheese 
cloth, and add 6 grains of prusslate 
of potash and 12 grains of bichromate 
of potash previously dissolved in as 
little boiling water as possible. Pour 
this mixture into a black glass bottle, 
cork tightly, and store in a dark 
place. This is a good black dye. To 
apply, first sponge or otherwise 
cleanse the garments, stretch them 
out smooth, and go over them with 
this dye by means of a soft brush. 
Let dry thoroughly before pressing. 

To Clean a Mackintosh. — To clean 
a mackintosh, scrub both sides with 
soap and water, and afterwards rinse 
it in clear water until the soap is re- 
moved. Hang up to dry without 
wringing. Care must be taken not to 
sponge a mackintosh with alcohol, 
chloroform, benzine, gasoline, turpen- 
tine, or any of the chemicals which 
are used in sponging other fabrics, as 
they have the property of dissolving 
rubber and will injure the texture 
of many waterproof garments. Am- 
monia may be applied freely. 

To Renovate Woolen Goods. — 
After woolen dress goods have been 
sponged or washed, to restore the 
original gloss rub the cloth with a 
brush dipped in a thin solution of 
gum arabic, cover with a dry cotton 
cloth, and dry under a weight. This 
method is useful to remove the spot 
caused by sponging out stains. To 
raise the nap on a rough woolen gar- 
ment, wet it, lay it on a smooth sur- 
face, and roughen it gently with a 
common prickly thistle, or what is 
known as a teasel brush. Afterwards 
brush with a stiff clothes brush the 
way of the nap. 



PREPARATIONS FOR WASH DAY 



175 



To Clean Hen's Woolen Clothes. — 
Boil for half an hour 2 ounces of soap 
bark in 1 quart of water, and let 
stand all night on the dregs. Strain 
through cheese cloth, and use alone 
or combined with an equal amount of 
gasoline. , 

Or use 1 part of oxgall to 16 
parts of water. Or use 1 tablespoon- 
fjil of oxgall and 1 teaspoonful of 
cooking soda to a quart of water. Or 
mix 6 oimces of soap jelly or good 
soft soap with 4 ounces of honey, the 
white of 1 egg, and 1 tablespoonful 
of brandy or alcohol. Or mix 1 ounce 
of sulphuric ether, 1 ounce of aqua 
ammonia, and 6 ounces of water. 

The most convenient way to clean 
men's garments is to remove the cover 
from an ironing board, or use some 
other smooth, clean, narrow board or 
plank, arranged to admit of laying 
the coat smoothly over it, or Insert 
the board into the trousers legs. A 
smooth, hard, narrow board is also 
desirable for coat sleeves. Arrange 
the garment on this board and with 
a stiff brush apply any of the cleans- 
ers you prefer. A bristle nailbrush 
or horsehair brush, such as is used in 
the stable for smoothing the* coats of 
horses, is a most useful implement for 
this purpose. Rub with, rather than 
against, the nap of the cloth, wetting 
the brush frequently. 

Scrub especially spots of grease and, 
if much soiled by perspiration, the 
coUar and cuffs. When the grease 
and dirt are thoroughly loosened, 
sponge with clear water until quite 
clean. Trousers and waistcoats may 
be rinsed by immersing in water and 
sousing up and down, but it is better 
not to immerse coats and jackets, as it 
is difBcult, on account of the padded 
linings, to press them into shape. 

To Renovate Men's Clothes. — Boil 
8 ounces of logwood chips in 2 gal- 
lons of water down to 1 gallon. Strain 
and add 3 ounces of gum arable, dis- 
solved in a little hot water. Bottle 
for ffuture use. 

After dark, solid-colored garments, 
as blacks, blues, or browns, have been 
scrubbed and sponged, dilute this mix- 



ture to the shade of the garment, and 
go over it lightly with a sponge. Do 
not expose to direct sunshine or the 
heat of a stove while drying. 

Or moisten a soft brush with olive 
oil and carefully go over the gar- 
ment. 

To Press Men's Clothes. — After 
sponging the garments, stretch them 
to their proper shape, lay them right 
side up over the ironing board, and 
press through linen or cotton cloth 
previously wrung out of clear cold 
water. A tablespoonful each of ox- 
gall and salt added to every gallon 
of water will tend to brighten the 
colors. Press with a hot iron until 
the garment is dry. 

Care must be taken that all the 
liquid preparations used for cleaning 
woolen goods be kept at the same 
temperature, which should be about 
as warm as the hands wiU bear com- 
fortably. 

After the garments have been 
pressed, brush with the nap while the 
steam is still rising from the cloth, 
and hang on suitable clothes hangers 
or over chairs to dry. Do not wear 
them for twenty-four hours or more 
after pressing, or until they are thor- 
oughly dry. 

TO DBY-CLEAir WOMEN'S GABMENTS 

To Clean Woolen Dresses. — The 
most satisfactory method of cleaning 
waists or skirts of wool, silk, velvet, 
or anything except cotton goods, is 
to soak and wash them in gasoline. 
For this purpose two or three large 
earthen jars wUl be found very use- 
ful. It pays to buy the best gasoline, 
five gallons at a time, and use it 
plentifully, as the expense is much 
less than would be the charge of a 
professional cleaner, or the cost of a 
new garment. 

First, dust the garments and rub 
soap on soiled or greasy spots. Noth- 
ing need be removed from them ex- 
cept rubber dress shields. 

Next, put large pieces, one at a 
time, in an earthen jar and cover with 
gasoline. Throw a wet cloth over the 



176 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



jar, and press the lid down tightly. 
Soak for an hour or more, then rub 
the article well, sousing it up and 
down, and transfer it to a second jar 
containing an equal amount of fresh 
gasoline. Rinse in this, squeeze out 
the gasoline, and hang up to dry. A 
third jar may be used if desired. 

Articles washed in this way wiU re- 
quire to be hung out and aired for 
two or three days, when the odor will 
entirely leave them. They should not 
be pressed until they are thoroughly 
dry and all the gasoline has evapo- 
rated. The gasoline can be poured 
back into the cans through cheese 
cloth and used again, as the dirt set- 
tles to the bottom. This operation 
must be carried on out of doors, as 
much of the gasoline will evaporate. 
If done in the house the odor would 
be very unpleasant, and, besides, the 
vapor is explosive and might cause 
accident. A small bristle brush dipped 
in the gasoline will be found useful 
for removing grease spots, scrubbing 
collars, and the like. If a small quan- 
tity of gasoline be put in a tin can 
and then surrounded by a vessel of 
boiling water (but not on the stove), 
it will do the work quickly and more 
thoroughly. 

Crape, Monrning, and Other Black 
Goods. — Black dress goods may be 
washed by observing the same caution 
as for other colored fabrics, whether 
cotton, linen, wool, or silk. To re- 
move stains before laundering, apply 
a solution of 1 part of alcohol and 
2 parts of water with a soft cloth, 
sponge, or soft bristle brush. 

To remove paint, apply spirits of 
turpentine; for grease, apply benzine 
or gasoline; for mud stains, rub the 
spot with a piece of raw potato. 

To Remove Gloss. — Sponge with a 
saturated solution of borax and water. 
Afterwards sponge with clear water. 

Or boil half a handful of flg leaves 
in a quart of water down to a pint. 
Strain and apply the clear liquor. 

Crape lace. — Dissolve a square 
inch of sheet glue in a pint of boiling 
water, add a pint of skim milk, and 
dip the lace in this while boiling hot. 



When cool enough to handle, remove, 
stretch, and clap the lace between the 
hands. Pin it to a linen cloth and 
stretch the cloth tent fashion to dry 
in the shade. 

White Spots. — If white spots or 
light-colored stains appear on black 
garments, apply India ink, marking 
ink, or common ink with a camel's- 
hair brush. Put a piece of blotting 
paper underneath the stain to absorb 
the surplus ink. 

To Revive Taded Colors. — In 3 
quarts of boiling water stir J pound 
of green vitriol, 1 pound of logwood 
chips, and J pound of bruised galls. 
BoU gently for 3 hours and strain 
through cheese cloth. 

Or mix oxgall, 4 ounces; logwood, 
i ounce; green vitriol, J ounce; iron 
filings, i ounce; sumac, J ounce, and 
vinegar, 1 quart. 

Or make a simple solution of log- 
wood, boiling 2 ounces of logwood in 
1 gallon of water down to 1 quart. 

To apply any of the above, dilute 
with sufficient hot water to cover the 
articles, and boil for half an hour. 
If the infusion of logwood is used 
alone, remove the articles, add an 
ounce of sulphate of iron, a;nd boil 
for half an hour. Hang them up 
without wringing in a shady place 
untU they cease to drip. Then rinse 
them in cold water, let them dry, and 
rub gently with a brush moistened 
with a little olive oil. 

To Clean and Scour Woolen Goods. 
— Remove all dirt and dust by shak- 
ing and brushing the articles. Re- 
move grease spots with turpentine, 
benzine, or gasoline. Make a strong 
suds of hard white or curd soap with 
water, and to each gallon add a table- 
spoonful of oxgall. Apply vigorous- 
ly with a fairly stiff nailbrush. Rinse 
by sponging with warm water con- 
taining salt, and dry by rubbing with 
a piece of clean flannel. 

Or, for garments which will not lose 
their shape, rinse in clear cold water 
and hang up to dry. 

Sponging with stale lager beer will 
give some stiffness and gloss to the 
surface. 



PREPARATIONS FOR WASH DAY 



177 



Or go over the surface with a brush 
slightly moistened with olive oil. 

To Dry-clean Woolen Cloth. — Re- 
move all spots and stains, and cover 
the garment with clean, damp sand, 
with which may be mixed a quantity 
of French chalk. Rub over the sur- 
face of the sand with the hands to 
work it into the texture of the fabric, 
and allow the garment to dry. Af- 
terwards brush off the sand. 

To Clean Scarlet Cloth. — Wash in 
bran water, and rinse in clear water 
containing a tablespoonful of solution 
of tin to each gallon. 

Or add a small quantity of scarlet 
dye to the last rinsing water. 

To Clean Light-colored Worsteds. 
— For delicate light-brown or buff 
colors apply pipe clay mixed with 
water to the consistency of milk. 
Cover the surface with this by means 
of a, sponge or brush. Brush off 
when dry. 

CLEANING AND CASE OF GLOVES 

To Clean Gloves. — For cleaning 
gloves, gasoline, benzine, naphtha, and 
soap used with either milk or water, 
fuller's earth, with or without pow- 




Wash Them in Gasoline." 



dered alum, cream of tartar, pipe 
clay, French chalk, bread crumbs, and 
corn meal are all recommended; for 



fruit and acid stains, ammonia; for 
ink stains, oxalic acid; and various 
compounds of these substances. 

Gasoline. — Draw the gloves on tcJ 
the hands and wash them in gasoline 
in the same fashion as the hands' are 
washed in water. Wipe off surplus 
gasoline with a piece of flannel, and 
allow the gloves to pai-tially dry on 
the hands. Afterwards hang on a 
line to dry in the sun. The soiled 
parts of the gloves may be rubbed' 
with any good white hard soap dur- 
ing this process. But they should 
not afterwards be washed In soap^ 
suds, as it shrinks and wrinkles them. 
For light glac6 kid gloves, draw the 
gloves on to the hands and with a 
flannel cloth apply a paste composed 
of flour and gasoline. Rub with a 
clean, dry cloth until quite dry. 

Turpentine. — Before the discovery 
of gasoline, gloves were cleaned by 
washing in spirits of turpentine in 
the same way as they are now washed 
in gasoline. Turpentine is to be pre- 
ferred when the gloves are stained 
with paint or resinous substances. 

Benzine. — Place the gloves in a 
large fruit jar full of benzine, screw 
on the lid and let them soak for twen- 
ty minutes or more, shaking the jar 
vigorously at intervals. Take them 
out and examine for dirt spots, which 
may be removed by rubbing with ben- 
zine on a flannel rag. Afterwards 
hang them up to dry in the open air. 
To remove the odor of benzine, pro- 
fessional cleaners dry articles cleaned 
in this manner in a drying room 
at a temperature of about 300°- 
But this odor will pass off after a 
time. 

Or draw the gloves on the hands, dip 
a flannel rag in benzine, and allow 
it to become nearly dry. While 
slightly damp, moisten the gloves with 
this by rubbing the hands with it as 
if with a towel. 

Or take part of a loaf of bread 
slightly moist, or dry bread crumbs, 
and rub lightly over the gloves until 
they are clean. Change the crumbs 
as they become soiled. Repeat if 
necessary. • 



178 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



Milk for Kid Gloves. — ^Draw the 
gloves on the hands, dip a cloth in 
skim milk, and wipe them on the 
cloth as if on a towel. Let them dry 
on the hands. 

Or draw a glove on one hand and 
with the other hand dip a piece of 
flannel in new milk, rub on castile 
soap or any good hard white soap, 
and rub the soiled glove lightly. 

Or lay the glove on a folded towel, 
dip a flannel cloth in milk, rub on 
castile soap or other white soap, and 
rub the glove lightly, working from 
the back or wrist toward the fingers. 

To Dry-clean Crloves. — Delicate 
white kid or subde gloves may be dry- 
cleaned with cream of tartar, mag- 
nesia, fuller's earth, alum, pipe clay, 
corn meal, or various compounds of 
these. 

■ A simple method is to draw the 
gloves on the hands and wash them 
thoroughly in fine corn meal. 

Or place the glove in a paper bag 
or fruit jar, iill them with a mixture 
of magnesia and cream of tartar, cov- 
er them with it, shake the bag, and 
let it stand over night. Rub off this 
mixture with a flannel cloth inside 
and out, draw the gloves on the hands, 
and apply a mixture of powdered 
alum and fuller's earth with a small, 
soft brush, sponge, nailbrush, or 
toothbrush. 

Or brush with fuller's earth with- 
out powdered alum, and dust it off. 

If the gloves are not entirely clean, 
draw them on the hands and apply 
fine bran or pipe clay, or a mixture of 
both. None of these substances wUl 
injure the gloves, and if one is not 
at hand use another. Bread crumbs 
are also useful, especially when the 
gloves are much soiled. Change the 
crumbs as they become dirty. 

To Glean Wash-leather Gloves. — 
Wash-leather gloves may be cleaned 
with soap and water. Draw them on 
the hands and with a shaving brush 
apply a lather of fine shaving or toilet 
soap. Wipe them on a clean towel 
and let them dry on the hands. 

Or, if much soiled with perspira- 
tion, apply a mixture of magnesia and 



cream of tartar, filling and covering 
the gloves and letting them stand over 
night. Rub oflf with a flannel cloth, 
draw the gloves on the hands, and 
wash them in lukewarm suds made 
with fine white soap, rinse in warm 
water, and let them remain on the 
hands until quite dry. 

To Color Wash-leather Gloves. — 
While the gloves are still damp they 
may be colored yellow by rubbing 
with yellow ocher, or white by rub- 
bing with pipe clay, or any desired 
intermediate shade by mixing the 
two. Mix into a paste with stale 
beer or vinegar. 

To Renovate Kid Gloves. — ^White 
kid gloves that are stained beyond 
cleaning may be dyed to a tan shade 
by applying two or three coats of 
saffron and water, drying them be- 
tween the coatings. Apply to the 
surface with a soft brush, wetting as 
little as possible. Black kid or suMe 
gloves when defaced may be improved 
by painting the worn spots with a 
mixture of black ink and olive oU. 
Apply it with a camel's-hair brush or 
feather, touch the spots lightly, and 
observe the effect by allowing the 
glove to dry before adding more 
color. Repeat if necessary. 

Glove Cleaners. — Scrape one pound 
of castUe or other hard white soap 
into a powder, place in a fruit jar, 
and add alcohol sufficient to make a 
soap jelly. Stir in a teaspoonful of 
ether or chloroform and keep the cov- 
er of the jar glued tight. 

Or grate IJ pounds of castile soap 
in IS ounces of water and dissolve 
with gentle heat. Melt 3 oimces of 
soap in an equal bulk of water, add 
2 ounces of Javelle water and 1 tea- 
spoonful of ammonia. This will form 
a thick paste or jell. Apply by put- 
ting the gloves on and using a flannel 
cloth. Dry the gloves on the hands. 

To Remove Stains. — Put a few 
tablespoonf uls of aqua ammonia in a 
large two-quart fruit jar, or other 
wide-mouthed bottle or can or similar 
receptacle, taking care not to wet the 
mouth or sides of the vessel. Sus- 
pend the gloves ia this vessel above 



PREPARATIONS FOR WASH DAY 



179 



the ammonia, where they will be 
penetrated by its fumes, and cover 
tightly. Do not allow the gloves to 
touch the ammonia water. This proc- 
ess will not injure the most delicate 
colors. 

To Bentove Ink Stains. — First dip 
the stained part in melted tallow to 
absorb the ink. Afterwards cover 
with pipe clay. 

Or insert a roll of brown paper in- 
side the glove and put another piece 
over it; then press gently with a 
warm iron. Repeat if necessary. 

Or, if the stain, is not removed, 
make a solution of 1 part of oxalic 
acid to 10 parts of water, and gently 
apply it to the spot with the tip_ of 
the finger, using as little as possible. 
Follow with a drop of aqua am- 
monia. 

Or wet the spot and cover with 
common soda to neutralize the effect 
of the acid. 

To Clean Kid Gloves. — Shave 3 
ounces of white soap and dissolve In 
a pint of milk with gentle heat. Add 
the white of 1 egg and beat up the 
whole with an egg beater. Add a tea- 
spoonful of sulphuric ether, draw on 
the gloves, and apply the paste with 
a small bit of sponge until clean. It 
is best to keep the gloves on until 
they are dry. This method not only 
cleans but softens and revives the 
leather. 

Or draw the gloves on the hand and 
go over them with a cloth dipped in 
skim milk. Wear them until quite dry. 

Or moisten a small sponge or piece 
of cloth in skim milk, rub it on a 
cake of Castile or other hard white 
soap, and with this sponge the gloves 
all over until they are clean. Wear 
them until dry. 

Or shave iine 3 ounces of castile 
or other hard white soap in 3 ounces 
of water, and dissolve with gentle 
heat. Remove from the fire, and when 
cold stir in 3 ounces of Javelle water 
and 1 teaspoonful of aqua ammonia. 
Apply with a flannel cloth. 

Or put the gloves in a large-stop- 
pered bottle about half filled with 
benzine and let stand several hours. 



shaking frequently. Remove the gloves, 
sponge any spots with benzine or 
ether, and hang up to dry. 

Or draw the gloves on to the hands 
and wash in benzine or turpentine. 
Dry on a soft muslin cloth or towel 
and hang up in a draught until the 
odor disappears. 

To Polish Kid Gloves. — Apply tal- 
cum or other good toilet powder or 
French chalk with a piece of soft 
muslin. 

To Clean Chamois.-; — To clean gloves 
and other articles of chamois skin, 
dissolve 3 tablespoonfuls of aqua am- 
monia in 1 quart of warm water. 
Soak the articles in this for an hour 
or more. Stir occasionally with a 
wooden spoon. Press out as much of 
the dirt as possible. Pour all into a 
basin of warm water, wash with the 
hands, rinse in clear soft water, dry 
in the shade, and rub between the 
hands until soft. 

TO CLEAIT FEATHEBS, 7UBS, AND 
STBAW 

To Clean Feathers. — Prepare suds 
by shaving and boiling half a bar of 
hard white or naphtha soap in a 
saucepan with sufficient water. Dilute 
with warm soft water. Immerse the 
plume in this and allow it to soak for 
ten or fifteen minutes, occasionally 
drawing it rather loosely through the 
hands to strip out the dirt with the 
suds. Rinse in water of the same 
temperature. If not yet clean, lay 
the feather on a smooth surface and 
with a soft toothbrush rub gently 
with soap and water, working out- 
wardly from the stem. Rinse in clear 
warm water and afterwards, if a white 
feather, in bluing water. Draw through 
the palm of the hand to squeeze out 
the water, but without twisting. Pin 
or stitch the stem to a cloth and hang 
up to dry with the thick end of the 
stem up and the plumage hanging 
down. Shake occasionally while dry- 
ing it, or, if time will permit, shake 
the feathers near tiie stove until dry. 

Or dry out of doors in' a gentle 
breeze. But care must be taken that 



180 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



the wind does not whip the feather 
and breals the stem. 

To Renovate Feathers. — Blacic 
feathers after having been washed 
may be restored to their original lus- 
ter as follows: dissolve 1 ounce of 
sulphate of iron in 1 quart of hot 
water. Immerse the feathers in this 
and let tliem steep until the liquid is 
cold. Hang up in a shady place to 
dry. Make a solution of logwood 
and gaUnuts by boiling. J ounce of 
each in a. copper vessel with 1 quart 
of water down to 1 pint. Remove 
from the fire, while hot, immerse the 
feathers, and allow them to remain 
until cool. Rinse in clear water and 
dry. Lay them on a smooth surface 
and rub from the stem outwardly with 
a piece of flannel slightly moistened 
in olive oil. 

Grebe Feathers and Other Skins. — 
These may be washed in the same 
manner as ostrich plumes by first re- 
moving the lining. They must be 
handled with great care to prevent 
injury by tearing. 

To Curl Feathers. — Feathers which 
have temporarily lost their curl from 
exposure to rain or fog may be im- 
proved by holding them over a fire 
and shaking occasionally until the 
matted fibers are loosened, when the 
curl will be restored. 

When the curl has been entirely 
taken out by washing or soaldng, it 
will be necessary to curl the fronds 
with the blunt edge of a knife or a 
piece of ivory. The curl will be more 
durable if the feather is held near 
the surface of a hot flatiron while 
curling. The feather should be bone 
dry. Do not take more than two or 
three fronds at a time, and draw them 
between the thumb and the blunt 
edge of a silver knife or ivory paper 
cutter. Begin at the point of the 
feather, and work along the stem on 
both sides. After a little practice 
feathers may be curled to look as 
good as new. 

Swan's-down. — To clean swan's- 
down, first tack the strips on a piece 
of muslin and wash same as ostrich 
plumes. When partially dry, remove 



the muslin and rub the feather care- 
fully between the fingers to make it 
pliant. 

To Prepare ftuills for Writing. — 
Cut thin, broad layers of cork wide 
enough to float the quills without 
their tipping over. Bore holes through 
these the right size to thrust the nibs 
through them so that they will be 
immersed when the corks float upon 
the water. Place the corks contain- 
ing the quills in a deep kettle or other 
receptacle so that the cover can be 
put on without interfering with the 
quills, and so that the nibs will be 
immersed in water. Boil them three 
or four hours. Dry for twenty-four 
hours, remove the pith, polish with 
flannel, and dry in a warm oven. This 
method hardens the quills like bone 
without making them brittle, and also 
renders them transparent. 

To Clean Fur. — The nature of fur 
is similar to that of wool, as both are 
animal fibers. Hence anything that 
will injure wool should not be used 
on fur of any description. Stains 
of grease or paint may be removed 
from fur hats or other articles by 
means of turpentine. Afterwards 
sponge with alcohol and dry. 

Or other furs may be cleaned by 
rubbing damp corn meal through them 
and allowing it to dry. Afterwards 
remove by shaking and brushing. The 
coarse furs, as bear, bufi^alo, etc., may 
be scrubbed with warm suds made of 
pure white soap and pure water, and 
their appearance will be very much 
improved by combing with a coarse 
comb. To improve the luster of furs, 
heat corn meal in an iron skillet to a 
rich brown but without burning. While 
still hot sprinkle it over the fur and 
rub with a flannel cloth. Afterwards 
remove by shaking and brushing. 

To Clean Straw Hats. — ^The most 
delicate straw goods, as Milan, Leg- 
horn, and other straws, can be thor- 
oughly cleaned by mixing the juice 
of a lemon with a tablespoonfiil of 
powdered sulphur to form a thick 
paste. Apply this to the hat with a 
nailbrush or toothbrush, first remov- 
ing the band, and rub the paste thor- 



PREPARATIONS FOR WASH DAY 



181 



oughly into the straw. Afterwards 
rinse by dashing water upon it from 
a glass, but without soaking; Shape 
the hat wliile still damp with a warm 
iron, pressing through a wet cloth 
until dry. 

Or press into shape and dry out of 
doors in the sun. 

Panama Eats. — Apply corn meal, 
slightly damp, with a faii-ly stiff nail- 
brush, changing the meal as it be- 
comes soiled. Brush off the excess 
of meal while still damp, dry the hat 
out of doors in the sun, and after- 
wards brush thoroughly. 

Or with a piece of flannel rub full- 
er's earth into the hat, cover quite 
thickly with it, and lay the hat away 
covered with a large piece of paper 
for four or five days. Remove the 
powder by brushing. 

Or apply peroxide of hydrogen with 
a flannel cloth. Repeat if necessary. 

To Size Straw Eats. — Beat up the 
white of an egg and apply to the hat 
after cleaning with a small camel's- 
hair brush or a sponge. 

BLEACEIITG VEGETABLE AITS ANI- 
MAL FIBEBS 

Bleaching. — Bleaching is the proc- 
ess of treating materials in such a 
way as to whiten them. Bleaching is 
commonly applied to textile goods, as 
linen, cotton, wool, and silk; also to 
paper, pulp, straw, ivory, wax, and 
animal and vegetable oils. The oper- 
ation of bleaching textile fabrics con- 
sists of two parts: first, removing 
dirt and other impurities and all for- 
eign substances, and afterwards alter- 
ing the natural coloring matter of the 
fabric by chemicals having specific 
bleaching properties. The preliminary 
operation of cleansing fabrics for 
bleaching is much the same as or- 
dinary washing in the domestic laun- 
dry. It depends upon the action of 
alkaline lyes and certain acids to dis- 
solve the resinous and fatty sub- 
stances and other impurities that may 
either be natural or may be intro- 
duced into the fabrics in the process 
of manufacture. 



The principal actual bleaching 
agents now employed are chlorine gas, 
usually combined with lime as chlor- 
ide of lime or bleaching powder; and 
sulphurous acid, usually as fumes of 
burning sulphur. Of these the chlor- 
ine compounds are the more power- 
ful. Like free alkali, however, they 
tend, after decomposing the coloring 
matter, to attack the fibers of the fab- 
ric itself and to injure them. Hence 
it is customary at the proper time to 
treat fabrics bleached by this agent 
with such substances as hyposulphite 
of soda to neutralize the excess of 
chlorine and prevent its further ac- 
tion. 

The various vegetable fibers, as cot- 
ton, flax, and hemp, are composed of 
cellulose, a substance that withstands 
to a great degree the action both of 
the acids and alkalies used in prelim- 
inary cleansing and the chlorine used 
as a bleaching agent. Animal fibers, 
on the other hand, as silk, wool, feath- 
ers, and the like, contain no cellulose 
and are readily destroyed by these 
agents. Hence they are commonly 
bleached by the action of sulphurous- 
acid gas. Various other chemicals, 
have been recommended for bleach- 
ing, but none of them are commonly 
employed. 

Previous to the application of mod- 
ern chemistry (during the latter part 
of the eighteenth century), bleaching 
was done without the use of chlorine 
or sulphurous acid, by soaking and 
washing the articles alternately in al- 
kaline and acid liquids, exposing them 
on the grass to the action of air, light, 
and moisture, and sprinkling them 
with water several times a day. 

The exact nature of the change 
which takes place in bleaching is not 
known, but it is supposed to be 
brought about by the action of ozone, 
or oxygen, in its active form. This 
is set free during the process of 
bleaching with chlorine, and is also 
known to be present in small quan- 
tities in the atmosphere. The ancient 
method of first soaking and washing 
articles in lye and acids and after- 
wards exposing them to the action of 



182 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



the elements, is still practiced in many 
localities, but the modern methods of 
bleaching by chlorides and sulphurous 
acid can be practiced successfully in 
any household. 

Bleaching Linen. — The fibers of 
raw or unbleached linen contain a 
large amount of resinous and other 
impurities, so that the operation of 
bleaching reduces their original weight 
by about two thirds. These foreign 
substances protect the fiber from be- 
ing injured by the alkali and acids 
which are used in bleaching. Hence 
the treatment recommended for un- 
bleached linen is not suitable for the 
finer qualities of bleached fabrics, but 
must be modified according to the 
quality and condition of the goods. 

The Dutch at one time had a mo- 
nopoly in certain grades of fine linens, 
hence known as " hollands," on ac- 
count of the superiority of their 
bleaching process. This consisted in 
treating the fabric by turns with al- 
kaline and acid liquids, and exposing 
it on lawns or bleaching greens from 
March until September. Hence the 
origin of the word " lawn " for cer- 
tain fine grades of linen. The Dutch 
process consisted of four different 
operations, frequently repeated: 

(1) Steeping in alkaline lye forty- 
eight hours, or in pure water for sev- 
eral days. 

(2) Boiling in alkaline lye, also 
called " bucking " or " hawking." 

(3) Exposing on the grass for 
weeks at a time and sprinkling fre- 
quently with water. 

(4) Souring with buttermilk. 
After each operation the cloth was 

washed in soapsuds and rinsed with 
water. This method is still employed 
and is suitable for either raw linen 
or cotton. It may be shortened by 
the employment of dilute sulphuric 
acid in place of buttermilk, and also 
by the use, under proper conditions, 
of chlorine in the form of chloride of 
lime or bleaching powder. 

Soaking in water or lye, washing, 
boiling in lye, and exposure on the 
grass, are still required, and the series 
of operations must be often repeated. 



To Bleach Baw Linen and Cotton 
Cloth. — Dissolve 1 pound of chloride 
of lime in a small quantity of cold 
water by rubbing with a stick until 
aU lumps have been dissolved. Add 
sufficient cold water to make 3 gal- 
lons, stirring vigorously. Preserve 
this liquid in an earthen jar as a 
bleaching fluid. 

Prepare a. lye by dissolving i pint 
of caustic potash or caustic soda in 
3 gallons of water. 

(1) Boil the fabric in this lye for 
three or four hours. 

(2) Wash thoroughly in soapsuds. 

(3) Rinse in pure water. 

(4) Steep three or four hours in 3 
gallons of cold water containing 1 
quart of bleaching fluid. 

(5) Steep for one hour in 3 gallons 
of water containing 3 wineglassfuls of 
sulphuric acid. 

(6) Wash in soapsuds. 

(7) Rinse in pure water. 

(8) Expose on a green lawn and 
sprinkle frequently with clear water. 

This will illustrate the method of 
domestic bleaching. This series of 
operations must be carried on contin- 
uously, and may be repeated weekly 
on the regular wash day when suds 
are at hand in which to wash out the 
lye and bleaching fluid. The articles 
may be exposed during the week and 
the operations repeated on the follow- 
ing or subsequent wash days until the 
bleaching has been completed. 

By reducing the strength of the lye 
one half the same series of operations 
may be carried on, a second or a third 
time if necessary, without " crofting," 
or exposure on a lawn. The latter 
method is, however, to be preferred. 
After the final operation rinse the ar- 
ticles in 3 gallons of water containing 
about 2 ounces of hyposulphite of 
soda and afterwards rinse in bluing 
water. 

Various methods of Bleaching ordi- 
narily recommended and practiced in 
modification of these processes are of 
the nature of short cuts to save labon 
Some of these, by employing strong 
bleaching agents without sufficient 
care, may tend to weaken the fabrics. 



PREPARATIONS FOR WASH DAY 



183 



and others are not strong enough to 
do the work well. The above is a 
standard that will serve to illustrate 
the principles involved. 

To Bleach Brown Sheeting. — This 
is for an ordinary partly bleached 
cotton fabriCi/ First wash with other 
white goods, and afterwards soak over 
night in strong soapsuds. Dissolve 2 
pounds of chloride of lime in a wash 
boiler containing 2J pails of boiling 
water, or about J pound of chloride 
of lime to the gallon. Stir vigorously, 
and when cold pour through cheese 
cloth into a tub. Immerse the goods 
in this, stirring with a clothes stick 
for half an hour. Rinse thoroughly 
with cold water containing 1 ounce 
of hyposulphite of soda to the gal- 
lon. Finally rinse in bluing water 
and hang up to dry. Repeat if neces- 
sary. This wUl take mildew out of 
cotton or duck cloth, and restore the 
color of cotton goods that have been 
stored and yellowed. 

These methods are, of course, not 
suitable for more delicate cotton fab- 
rics. 

Bleaching with Sal Soda. — Wash- 
ing soda tends to bleach garments, 
but also injures them unless it is thor- 
oughly removed by rinsing. Put no 
more than one teaspoonful in a boil- 
erful of clothes. 

Bleaching by Turpentine. — Dis- 
solve 1 teaspoonful of oil of turpen- 
tine and 3 teaspoonfuls of alcohol in 
the last rising water. 

Wool. — The process of bleaching 
raw wool requires five stages: 

(1) It is washed on the sheep to 
remove sweat and dirt. Among other 
impurities found in sheep's wool is a 
substance called " suint," containing 
potash, which may be preserved and 
utilized. 

(3) The wool is scoured by an am- 
moniacal lye consisting of stale urine 
dissolved in water, or by immersing 
in soapsuds or a weak alkaline lye at 
a temperature of about 130°. This 
removes a kind of lime soap and other 
impurities in it. These are the pre- 
liminary processes of cleansing, after 
which the wool is spun into yarn and 



prepared for bleaching either in the 
yarn or cloth. 

(3) Steeping in a, weak lukewarm 
solution of carbonate of soda and 
soapsuds. 

(4) Washing with lulcewarm soap- 
suds. 

(5) Exposing to the fumes of sul- 
phurous acid. 

The last three operations are re- 
peated if necessary. Afterwards the 
yarn or cloth is rinsed in bluing 
water. Operations 1 and 3 may be 
performed on the farm to improve 
the appearance of wool for the mar- 
ket. Operations 3, 4, and 5 may be 
performed in the house to bleach 
yarn or woolen fabrics. 

Chlorine in any form, as chloride of 
lime or bleaching powders, must not 
be used for woolen articles. 

To Bleach Woolen Goods with Sul- 
phur. — An inverted barrel, cask, box, 
or anything that is large enough and 
tight enough to hold the fumes of 
sulphur may be employed. Place this 
out of doors on a still day, or in an 
outhouse, turned upside down and 
supported on three or four bricks, to 
admit a slight draught. Suspend the 
articles inside by means of hooks, or 
by passing cord or wire through gim- 
let holes and tying it about them. 
Afterwards fill the gimlet holes with 
rags or wax. 

Kindle coke or charcoal, or place 
other live coals in an iron pan, sprin- 
kle flowers of sulphur or pulverized 
brimstone on the coals, and set direct- 
ly beneath. If the receptacle used is 
not quite tight, cover closely with a 
wet piece of heavy cloth or old car- 
pet. Care must, of course, be taken 
not to inhale the fumes of sulphur or 
to permit the sulphur to blaze and 
scorch the goods. The articles should 
be first washed in soapsuds, and 
wrung out of weak suds without rins- 
ing. 

For Small Articles. — A paper flour 
sack, to which they may be attached 
by pins or basting threads, is light, 
tight, and convenient for bleaching 
small articles. Put the brimstone in 
a saucer and cover with a tin funnel. 



184 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



so that the fumes will be directed up 
into the bag. Repeat if necessary, 
hang the articles out of doors until 
the odor has passed away, and wash 
as usual. This method is suitable for 
flannels, woolen hose, yarn, and also 
for silk, straw, and straw goods. 

To Bleacli with Oxalic Acid. — Dis- 
solve 1 ounce of oxalic acid in 1 gal- 
lon of boiling water; allow this to 
cool until it will bear the hands. Im- 
merse the articles and let them steep 
for an hour or more, rinse thoroughly, 
and dry. Repeat if necessary. 

To Bleach Plannel. — Dissolve 1 
ounce of powdered anunonia and 1 
ounce of salt in 2 quarts of water. 
Soak the articles in this for an hour 
or more. 

Or dissolve 2 ounces of bisulphite 
of soda in 1 gallon of water acidulat- 
ed slightly with hydrochloric acid. 

To Bleach Silk. — Nearly one half, 
by weight (30 to 40 per cent), of the 
fibers of sUk consists of various gums 
and coloring matter. 

The operation of bleaching consists 
in 

(I) Boiling the silks in soapsuds, 
with the addition of bran, to remove 
these impurities; (3) exposing them 
to sulphurous-acid gas. 

Or boil in soapsuds, rinse, and ex- 
pose to the sun. Or bleach with the 
fumes of sulphur. 

To Bleach Feathers. — ^Make a di- 
lute solution of bicarbonate of potas- 
sium, 1 part to 10 parts of water, 
slightly acidulated with nitric acid, 1 
fluid ounce to the gallon. Immerse 
the feathers for 3 or 4 hours. Af- 
terwards rinse in clear water, slightly 
acidulated with sulphuric acid, 1 fluid 
ounce to the gallon. 

To Bleach Straw Goods. — Sub- 
stances recommended for bleaching 
straw and straw goods, including 
straw hats, are sulphurous acid (i. e., 
fumes of burning sulphur), chlorine 
water (or chloride of lime), citric 
acid, and oxalic acid. Straw goods 
must be prepared for bleaching by 
scrubbing with lukewarm soap and 
water. 

The safest and best method of 



bleaching straw is perhaps by means 
of the fumes of burning sulphur. This 
method is employed by manufacturers 
and milliners to bleach hats and bon- 
nets. All bands and trimmings must 
first be removed. 

Or apply chlorine water with a 
sponge, cloth, or brush. Afterwards 
rinse in clear water containing hypo- 
sulphite of soda. 

Or make a paste of corn meal and 
a solution of oxalic acid in water. 
Spread this on the hat, allow it to 
dry, and remove by brushing. 

Or apply a strong solution of^ ox- 
alic acid and water, and rinse. 

Or immerse in a weak solution of 
chloride of lime — 2 ounces to 1 gal- 
lon of water. Rinse in water con- 
taining hyposulphite of soda. 

Or make a paste of flowers of sul- 
phur. Or pulverize brimstone with 
water. Cover with this, and expose 
to direct sxmshine until dry. Repeat 
if necessary. Remove the sulphur by 
brushing. This is simple and success- 
ful. 

To Bleach Straw Braid. — ^Dissolve 
6 ounces of chloride of lime in a gal- 
lon of water. 

(1) Dip the goods in this for thir- 
ty minutes. 

(2) Dip in clear water acidulated 
with muriatic or siilpburic acid at the 
rate of 1 fluid ounce to the gallon. 

(3) Rinse in clear water containing 
1 ounce of hyposulphite of soda to 
the gallon. 

Or dip in weak soapsuds and ex- 
pose to the fumes of burning sulphur. 

To Prevent White Goods from Fad- 
ing. — If a suitable lawn or grassplot 
is available, spread white garments 
on the grass to dry during the warm 
months of the year. This is more con- 
venient than fastening to a line and 
keeps the garments always bleached. 
Faded articles may be bleached in 
this way by keeping them constantly 
moistened with clear water. 

To Bleach Unbleached Mnslin.— 
Unbleached muslin is more durable 
than that which has already been 
bleached. Hence it pays to buy it 
by the piece and bleach it before mak- 



PREPARATIONS FOR WASH DAY 



185 



ing it up. Place on the stove a boil- 
erful of strong bluing water, or use 
indigo instead of bluing. Unroll the 
cloth, put it in the boiler, and boil 
ten or twenty minutes. Hang it out 
on a clear, sunshiny day to drip; dry 
without wringing. When partially dry 
spread it on the grass to bleach. 

To Whiten Lace. — First wash in 
strong soapsuds, rinse and immerse 
in fresh suds, and expose to the sun. 

Or first wash and iron, stitch on 
cotton with basting thread, and soak 
for twenty minutes in olive oil. Af- 
terwards boil for twenty minutes in 
suds of castile or other hard white 
soap and rinse in warm water. 

To Bleach faded White Goods. — 
All cotton and linen fabrics and gar- 
ments that have been laundered tend 
to become yellow by the action of the 
alkali contained in the soap, which is 
imperfectly removed in rinsing. Gar- 
ments that have been laid away for a 
time, as summer dresses, wUl fre- 
quently come out in the spring much 
yellowed or faded. Put the faded ar- 
ticles in a separate boiler and add i 



pound of cream of tartar. Boil until 
the goods are clear. Wring out of 
bluing water and lay on the grass to 
dry. 

Or soak the garments over night in 
clear cold water, wring out, and soak 
for twenty-four hours in sour milk 
or buttermilk. If much yellowed, 
soak a third night in weak suds con- 
taining a little hard white soap and 
a tablespoonful of kerosene. After- 
wards boil in suds containing a table- 
spoonful of kerosene. Rinse in blu- 
ing water, and hang out to drip dry. 

Or boil the articles for fifteen or 
twenty minutes in strong soapsuds 
containing 1 tablespoonful of essence 
of turpentine and 3 tablespoonfuls 
of aqua ammonia, stirring occasional- 
ly. Care must be taken not to im- 
merse the arms in suds containing 
turpentine. Rinse the articles, using 
a clothes stick, in one or two clear 
waters, and wash and blue in the 
usual way. 

Washing soda should not be used 
for bleaching purposes, as it tends to 
rot the fabric. 



CHAPTER V 

SOAP AND SOAP MAKING 

UTENSILS AND MATERIALS FOR SOAP MAKING — SOFT SOAP- 
HARD SOAP— SODA SOAPS— ROSIN SOAP— SPECIAL SOAPS 



Properties of Soap. — Garments of 
linen and other fabrics become soiled 
principally by the oily exudations of 
the body, as in perspiration and the 
natural oil of the hair, and, in the 
case of table linen, by animal fats, 
etc. The skin itself, of course, retains 
a considerable part of the oily sub- 
stances not absorbed by the clothing. 
These greasy substances by their ad- 
hesive quality attract and hold parti- 
cles of dirt. When soap is dissolved 
in water, the neutral alkali salts be- 
come in part separated into alkali 
which dissolves, and free fatty acid 
which precipitates. This explains why 
the transparency of clear water is 
disturbed by the use of soap even of 
the purest kind. 

The detergent or cleansing proper- 
ties of soap are due to the presence 
of free alkali, either caustic potash 
or soda liberated in the soapsuds. This 
attacks and decomposes the grease 
contained in soiled linen, in perspira- 
tion, and in dishwater, unites with 
the fatty acids, and in turn saponifies 
them. The process is precisely simi- 
lar to that of soap making. The union 
of the alkali set free in soapsuds with 
the grease of garments or dishwater 
produces a soapy substance which is 
readily soluble, and hence is easily 
removed by rinsing. 

Free Alkali. — Since the cleansing 
properties of soap are due to the 
presence of free alkali, it may be 
asked why the alkalies themselves — as 
potash lye or $al soda, cannot be used 



186 



without the trouble of uniting them 
with animal fats by soap making. It 
is true that lye and other strong alka- 
lies have strong detergent properties. 
They attack, however, not only the 
grease, but also the fabrics themselves 
and rot or weaken them, and also ir- 
ritate the skin. Hence the object of 
soap making is to form a compoimd 
which will release a small definite 
quantity of alkali at the moment that 
it is required. 

Soap Test. — Alkali has a strong, bit- 
ing taste. Hence the best test of soap 
is to apply the tongue to it. If it 
bites, the soap contains an excess of 
free alkali and is not suitable for the 
toilet or laundry. If it does not, it 
is good soap and will probably not 
injure the most delicate fabrics. 

Importance of Soap. — Whether or 
not cleanliness is next to godliness, 
historians say that the degree of civ- 
ilization of a nation is indicated by 
the quantity of soap it consumes. The 
kind and quality of soap and. other 
cleansing articles used by a house- 
hold is a good indication of the re- 
finement of the family. There should 
be no economy in the use of soap, but 
since, if very freely used, it becomes 
Quite an important item of expense, 
a considerable saving may be made 
by the use of homemade soap and 
other cleansing compounds. 

The domestic art of soap making 
also has an educational value. Soap 
is a chemical compound and we per- 
form a real chemical experiment every 



SOAP AND SOAP MAKING 



187 



time we wash our hands or wash 
clothing in the laundry. Soap was 
made as early as the second century 
of the Christian era, before the mod- 
ern science of chemistry was inaugu- 
rated, and good soap may be made 
by observing the following instruc- 
tions without troubling oneself to un- 
derstand the chemical principles in- 
volved. On the other hand, it is 
interesting, as a matter of general in- 
formation, to understand the chemis- 
try of soap making. 

There is a group of substances hav- 
ing similar properties, which is known 
in chemistry as alkalies, and another 
group, having very different proper- 
ties, which is known as acids. These 
two kinds of substances have a strong 
attraction or afBnity for each other, 
and when brought together under suit- 
able conditions they unite to form 
another class of substances, the com- 
pounds known as salts. Common salt 
is a good example; it consists of an 
alkali, sodium, and an acid, chlorine. 
Most of the salts are freely soluble 
in water. 

Soaps are alkali salts of fatty acids. 
The alkalies commonly used in mak- 
ing soaps are soda and potash. All 
of the animal fats, and also the ani- 
mal and vegetable oils, contain fatty 
acids. When the proper alkalies are 
brought into contact with animal fats 
or oils, under proper conditions, the 
alkalies attack the globules of fat or 
oil and unite with the fatty acids to 
form alkali salts of fatty acids — ^i. c, 
soap. This process is known as sa- 
ponification. 

To make soap it is customary to 
dissolve an alkali, either potash or 
soda, in water, forming a liquid known 
as lye, to dilute the lye, to then mix 
with it a suitable quantity of fat or 
oil, and to stir until saponification 
takes place. If the mixture is cold, 
the process may require several days 
or even months, depending upon the 
strength and purity of the ingredi- 
ents. But if the mixture is raised to 
212° F. by boiling, the process of 
saponification may take place in a 
few minutes or hours. Hence there 



are two processes of soap making — 
in the cold and by boiling. 

The cold process, generally speak- 
ing, produces what is known as a soft 
soap. This is not true or pure soap, 
but contains, in addition to the actual 
dry alkali salts of the fatty acids — ■ 
i. e., real soap — certain other ingredi- 
ents, as water, glycerin (which is con- 
tained in all natural fats and is lib- 
erated in the process of soap making), 
more or less free alkali, and other 
impurities. In other words, soft soap 
is only partially saponified. The pure 
or hard soap, completing the process 
of saponification, is obtained by boil- 
ing soft soap until the glycerin and 
other impurities are absorbed by the 
hot lye, and by the addition of salt 
to remove the surplus of water. The 
salt, having a stronger afSnity for 
water than the soap has, causes the 
water and the impurities it holds in 
solution to sink into the oil. The 
pure hard soap rises to the surface 
and forms a cake which may be re- 
moved. The lye, containing glycerin 
and other impurities, can then be dis- 
carded. 

A better quality of soap may be 
obtained by melting the product of 
the first boiling a second time, and 
by adding more clean, strong lye and 
clear melted grease or oil, until com- 
plete saponification takes place. 

1TTENSIIS AND MATEBIALS FOB 
SOAP UAEIN6 

Utensils for Soap Making. — A large 
iron soap kettle or a common wash 
boiler is a great convenience for mak- 
ing soap in large quantities. Two or 
three smaller kettles can also be em- 
ployed to advantage. A common meat 
chopper may be used to reduce soap 
to small pieces to make it dissolve 
readily. All of these utensils can, of 
course, be readily cleansed after using. 
A large iron set kettle is a great 
convenience on the farm for soap 
making and numerous other purposes. 
If fire is built so as to heat the kettle 
at the sides rather than in the mid- 
dle, the contents will be much less 



188 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



likely to boil over. A ladle holding 
about a quart and a wooden paddle 
with a long handle for stirring are 
necessary. Also have at hand a glass 




"A Large Iron Set Kettle is Convenient." 

dish or plate on which to cool a few 
drops of the liquid from time to time 
to test it. 

Materials for Soap. — A consider- 
able saving may be made by soap 
making at home, even if the materials 
are purchased. Mutton tallow, beef 
suet, and lard from pork scraps, and 
caustic soda or potash may be em- 
ployed, and these ingredients cost 
very little. But homemade soap may 
be made for next to nothing by using 
kitchen drippings and scraps that 
would otherwise be wasted and by 
leaching lye from wood ashes. 

To Make Potash lye from Ashes. — 
Fit a half barrel or tub with a faucet 
near the bottom and make a filter in- 
side about the mouth of the faucet 
with some bricks or stones covered 
with straw. Fill the tub with hard- 
wood ashes. Ashes from oak wood 
are said to be the strongest, and those 
from the apple tree are said to make 
the whitest soap. When the tub is 
full pour over the ashes boiling water 
until it begins to run from the faucet. 
Shut the faucet and let the ashes soak. 
As they settle, add more ashes until 
the tub is again full. The longer the 



water stands before being drawn off 
the stronger the lye will be. Usually 
a few hours will be suflScient. The 
strength of the lye need not be always 
the same, as the alkali will only unite 
with a certain proportion of fat any- 
way, and more lye can be added until 
all the fat is saponified. Lye that 
will float a fresh egg is regarded as 
of standard strength for soap mak- 
ing. 

To Make Potash. — If a recipe calls 
for potash and the commercial article 
is not at hand it may be made by 
boiling down the lye in a heavy iron 
kettle. After the water is driven off 
a dark, dry residue will remain which 
is known as " black salts." The heat 
must be kept up until this is melted, 
when the black impurities will be 
burned away and a grayish-white sub- 
stance will remain. This is potash. 

Potash soaps are, generally speak- 
ing, soft soaps. When the native for- 
ests were being cleared away in this 
country in colonial days (as also in 
Russia and in timber lands to-day), 
coiisiderable quantities of commercial 
potash were made by this method. 
Our grandparents and great-grand- 
parents used soft soap from home- 
made potash almost exclusively. There 
is no doubt that in many localities it 
is still profitable to follow their ex- 
ample. 

To Make Soda Lye from Sal Soda. 
— Caustic soda is prepared commer- 
cially by the action of quicklime on 
sal soda (sodium carbonate). 

Soda lye can be made at home by 
the following process: 

First slake 1 quart of quicklime 
with 3 quarts of water, which will re- 
duce the lime to the consistency of 
cream. Now dissolve 3 quarts of sal 
soda in S quarts of boiling water. 
Add the slaked lime, stirring vigorous- 
ly, and keep the mixture at a boil un- 
til the ingredients are thoroughly 
mingled. Allow the mixture to cool 
and settle, pouring the lye off the 
dregs. Caustic soda is produced from 
this lye by boiling down the lye until 
the water is evaporated, when a dry 
residue is left in the kettle. 



SOAP AND SOAP MAKING 



189 



To Preserve Grease. — Animal fats 
suitable for soap making may be ob- 
tained by trying out beef suet, mut- 
ton tallow, or pork scraps, straining 
the melted grease through a coarse 
linen cloth, and squeezing the scraps 
dry. Fat may be purified by boiling 
in water in which a little salt or alum 
has been added. When allowed to cool 
the pure fat will rise in a cake. This 
cake of fat, before it is put away in 
the grease tub, must be carefully dried 
from the water which adheres to it 
when lifted or it will not keep sweet. 
This is the best method of preserving 
soap grease. 

Or, since it is not always convenient 
to try out the scraps and strain the 
grease, it is quite customary to allow 
such grease and scraps to accumulate 
for a longer or shorter period. Hence 
another method is to have at hand a 
large iron kettle partly filled with 
weak lye and drop into this all the 
bits of fat from steaks, chops, and 
ham, surplus grease used in frying, 
and the like, including bits of lean 
meat and bone. The action of the lye 
partially saponifies the grease and 
prevents it from becoming rancid. 
Before the kettle becomes full, an op- 
portimity may be taken to try out the 
grease by boiling and straining. 

Or have at hand a half barrel or 
cask containing weak lye, drop into 
this cask all the scraps and grease, 
and allow them to accumiilate until 
the time comes for soap making. 

To Purify Grease. — If grease and 
scraps are exposed to the air at or- 
dinary temperatures, the particles of 
lean meat and other impurities which 
they contain will decompose and the 
grease itself will become rancid. 

When this happens, put the grease 
in a boiler with about three times its 
weight of water, and add 1 teaspoon- 
ful of permanganate of potash for 
each 6 pounds of the grease. Stir, 
boil, and strain through a cloth, 
squeezing the scraps as dry as possi- 
ble. The pot of lye can be added to 
the kettle of soap. 

To Grain Fat. — ^A much better soap 
may be made if the accumulation of 



grease is prepared by a process which 
reduces it to a grapular sta'te. Grained 
fat is sweet and is acted on by the lye 
easily and quickly, probably because 
its granular condition enables the al- 
kali to come in contact with a greater 
portion of its surface. It gives a soap 
free from rank odors, and if thor- 
oughly dried and kept dry may be 
preserved for an indefinite time. 

To grain fat it must be cut into 
small pieces and boiled in water in 
the proportions of about 40 pounds 
of water to 100 pounds of fat. To 
this mixture add J pound of alum and 
i pound of salt. Boil and strain 
through a coarse cloth. Wash the 
cake of strained fat in clean water. 
Remelt with gentle heat, and pour 
into a receptacle containing about 
twice as much water as the melted 
grease. Now add about one tenth by 
bulk of good clear soap in comparison 
with the amount of grease, taking care 
that the temperature of the grease 
and water is kept at about blood heat. 
Stir the mixture thoroughly until cold, 
allow the fat to rise, and it will be 
found in a perfect granular condi- 
tion. It should be placed on slats to 
drain, and thoroughly dried before 
being packed in tubs or earthenware 
for preservation. 

SOPT SOAP 

Soft Soap — Cold Process. — A pow- 
erful detergent for scrubbing floors, 
walls, and sinks, and all other pur- 
poses of the household can be made 
from ordinary kitchen drippings by 
the use of crude potash. This is very 
common in the older portions of the 
United States, especially New York 
and New England. One of the best 
traditional receipts for homemade soft 
soap is; fat, 12 pounds; potash, 9 
pounds; water, 12 gallons. 

Put the fat in a tight cask or bar- 
rel and add the potash dissolved in 3 
gallons of boiling water. Mix by stir- 
ring. Add the remaining 9 gallons 
of water, 3 gallons at a time, boiling 
hot, once in 24 hours, and each time 
stir vigorously. A long stick or pad- 



190 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



die should be kept in the mixture, and 
it should be stirred frequently. The 
alkali at once attacks the fat, but it 
will require a month or more, depend- 
ing upon the purity of the Ingredients, 
to complete the process of saponifica- 
tion. When the soap is done it will 
be free from lumps and will have a 
uniform jellylike consistency. When 
stirred it will have a silky luster and 
will trail off in slender threads from 
the paddle. 

Soft soap contains, in addition to 
the actual alkali salts of the fatty 
acids — i. e., reeil soap — a certain 
amount of free alkali, aU of the glyc- 
erin contained in the fat, which is 
released in the process of saponifica- 
tion, and other impurities. If these 
are removed by boiling, the result is 
the formation of hard soap as here- 
inafter described. 

Soft Soap — Boiling Process. — Soft 
soap may also be made by boiling di- 
lute caustic potash lye or lye from 
leached ashes with grease until sapon- 
ification takes place. To effect this, 
prepare a sufficient quantity of lye in 
a separate receptacle, put the grease 
in the soap kettle, add sufficient lye in 
which to melt the grease without 
burning, and continue to ladle in ad- 
ditional lye until all the grease is 
saponified. This will be done more 
quickly if the lye is added boiling 
hot. In making soft soap it must be 
borne in mind that aU impurities con- 
tained in the ingredients will be found 
in the completed product. Hence the 
importance of purifying the grease 
and using a good white lye. Also, if 
too much lye is added, a soft soap 
will be produced that will have strong 
caustic properties. Hence more grease 
must be put in to take up the excess 
of lye. 

As the lye is gradually added and 
combined with the grease, the thick 
liquid will become stringy and some- 
what turbid. It will fall from the 
paddle with a shining luster. A ladle- 
ful of a stronger lye should be added 
at regular intervals until the liquid 
becomes clarified in a uniformly clear 
slime. 



To test if the soap is done, put a 
few drops from the middle of the 
kettle on a plate of glass to cool. If 
the soap remains clear when cool it 
is complete. If there is a great de- 
ficiency of lye the drop of soap will 
be weak and gray; if the deficiency 
is not quite so great there may be 
merely a gray margin around the out- 
side of the drop; if too much lye has 
been added a gray skin will spread 
over the whole drop. It will cease 
to be sticky, but while wet can be 
easily slid along the glass. In this 
case the soap is said to be overdone 
and more grease must be added. The 
froth which rises is caused by an ex- 
cess, of water, and the soap must be 
kept on the fire until this is evaporat- 
ed, the froth being beaten with pad- 
dles to admit the air. When the froth 
ceases to rise the soap falls lower in 
the kettle and takes on a darker col- 
or. White bubbles appear on its sur- 
face one over another, with a peculiar 
sound, causing soap boilers to say 
that " the soap talks." It is now com- 
plete and is ready for use as soon as 
cold. 

Becipes for Soft Soap^Cold Proc- 
ess. — Mix in a kettle or wash boiler 
8 pounds of melted grease with 1| 
pailfuls of strong lye that will float 
a fresh egg. Bring to a boil, pour 
into the soap barrel, and thin with 
weak lye obtained by leaching wood 
ashes. Place the barrel out of doors 
in warm water or in a warm place. 
The soap should be ready for use in 
a few days. 

Or mix 10 pounds of clear melted 
grease, 6 pounds of sal soda, and 8 
gallons of hot water in the soap bar- 
rel. Stir once a day and let the mix- 
ture stand until completely saponi- 
fied. 

Or melt 8 pounds of grease in a 
kettle and bring to the boiling point. 
In another kettle melt 8 pounds of 
caustic soda and 1 pound of sal soda 
in 4 gallons of soft water, and pour 
all together into a 40-gallon cask. Fill 
up the cask with soft water, stir daily, 
and let the mixture stand until sapon- 
ified. 



SOAP ANp SOAP MAKING 



191 



Or melt 4 pounds of lard in a ket- 
tle and 6 pounds of potash in an- 
other kettle with 3 to 5 gallons of 
water. Pour the lard into the melted 
potash in a thin stream, stirring con- 
stantly. Pour into a tub and let 
stand until saponified. 

Mix 6 pounds of potash, 4 pounds 
of lard, and J pound of powdered 
rosin, and allow the mixture to stand 
for a week. Now melt in a kettle 
with 2 or 3 gallons of water, pour 
the mixture into a 10-gallon cask filled 
with soft water, and stir two or three 
times a day for 2 weeks. 

Or put into a kettle i poimd of sal 
soda and 1 pound of brown soap in 
shavings. Add a pailful of cold water, 
melt with gentle heat, and stir until 
dissolved. It is ready to use as soon 
as cool. 

Soft Soap — ^Boilingr Frocess. — Dis- 
solve 8 pounds of potash in a large 
iron pot with 3 or 4 gallons of boiling 
water. Melt 8 pounds of clarified 
fat to the boiling point in a separate 
vessel. Now put 4 gallons of boiling 
water in a soap barrel and add with 
a ladle first 1 quart of hot fat and 
then 1 quart of the hot lye. Continue 
this process — one person stirring brisk- 
ly and another ladling — imtil fat and 
lye are all used. Now pour in enough 
boiling water to fill the barrel, stir- 
ring constantly until the whole be- 
comes a, creamy emulsion of a uni- 
form appearance. Let the barrel 
stand for 2 or 3 months in a cool 
place until it is completely saponi- 
fied. 

Or dissolve 1 pound of potash in 1 
gallon of warm water. Let it stand 
over night, and in the morning bring 
it to a boil and add 10 ounces of pure 
clarified melted grease. Place this in 
a tub with IJ gallons of warm water, 
mix well, and allow to stand until 
saponified. 

Soft Soap. — ^Melt 4 pounds of clear 
fat in one kettle, and dissolve 4 
pounds of caustic potash with 6 quarts 
of boiling water in another. Pour 2 
gallons of soft water, boiling hot, into 
a clean tub or barrel, and ladle into 
this water the melted fat and the dis- 



solved potash alternately, one person 
ladling and another stirring, until the 
ingredients are thoroughly mixed. Add 
boiling soft water each day, 2 gallons 
at a time, stirring the whole each time 
vigorously, until it equals 16 gallons^ 
Place the barrel in a cellar or other 
cool place and stir occasionally for 3 
minutes. The oftener it is stirred the 
better. This is a standard household 
recipe. 

Hard Soap Hade Soft. — Hard soap 
may be reduced to the consistency of 
soft soap by dissolving it in a suit- 
able quantity of water. Shave the 
hard soap fine or run it through a 
meat cutter. Add twice its bulk of 
soft water and simmer with gentle 
heat until the soap is dissolved. 

The amount of water required will 
depend upoft the nature of the soap. 
If too thick, a little more water may 
be added; if too thin, the excess of 
water may be removed by keeping 
on the stove until the surplus water 
has evaporated. If quite thin when 
taken from the fire it will assume on 
hardening about the consistency of 
soft soap, and will not irritate the 
skin as ordinary soft soap is apt to 
do on account of its excess of alkali. 

HABS SOAP 

To Boil Hard Soap. — The process 
of making hard soap is similar to that 
of making soft soap by boiling, with 
the addition of steps taken to sepa- 
rate water, glycerin, excess of alkali, 
and other impurities from the true 
soap, i. e., the alkali salts of the fat- 
ty acids. As, this is the real process 
of soap making, it may be described 
in full. The best method requires 
three kettles, two small kettles to hold 
the lye dnd the fat respectively, and 
one large enough to contain both in- 
gredients without boiling over. Put 
the clean grained fat, or the grease, 
in one of the smaller kettles, with suf- 
ficient water or weak lye to prevent 
burning, and raise to a boil. Put the 
lye, or the solution of soda or potash, 
or both, in the other small kettle and 
dissolve in boiling water. Now place 



192 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



the large kettle on the fire and ladle 
into it about one quarter of the melt- 
ed fat. Add an equal quantity of 
the hot lye, stirring the mixture con- 
stantly. Continue thus, one person 
ladling and another stirring, until 
about two thirds of the fat and lye 
have been thoroughly mixed together. 
At this stage the mixture should be 
a uniform emulsion of about the con- 
sistency of cream. A few drops of 
the fluid cooled on a glass plate should 
show neither globules of oil nor water 
separately, and a drop of the cooled 
liquid on the tongue should not have 
an alkaline, biting taste. Now add 
enough strong lye to complete the de- 
composition of the fats and the re- 
moval of the glycerin, and continue 
boiling imtil the mixture has a strong 
alkaline or burning taste. Add the 
remainder of the fat and lye alter- 
nately, taking care that in the end 
there shall be no excess of lye. 

Up to this point the process is sim- 
ilar to boUing soft soap, and we have 
seen that to make soft soap of the 
mixture it is only necessary to evapo- 
rate the excess of water by a boiling- 
down process. The important dif- 
ference in making hard soap is the 
addition, at this point, of salt, by 
means of which the creamy emulsion 
of oils and alkali is broken up. The 
salt has a stronger affinity for water 
than soap has. Hence the salt takes 
the water and causes the soap to sepa- 
rate and rise on the surface of the lye 
in a curdy, granulated state. The 
mother liquor or spent lye wiU be 
foimd to contain glycerin and salt 
with other impurities, but no fat or 
alkali. Hence glycerin is one of the 
important by-products of commercial 
soap making. 

To Improve Hard Soap. — A better 
quality of soap may be made by re- 
melting the product of the first boil- 
ing and adding more fats or oils and 
lye as needed vntil the mixture has a 
decided taste of alkali, then boiling 
the whole until the process of saponi- 
fication is complete. 

If pure grained fat and good white 
lye are used, the resulting product 



will be a. pure white hard soap that 
will be suitable for all household pur- 
poses. The time required will depend 
on the strength of the lye, but usually 
from two to four hours' boiling is 
necessary. 

Hard Soap. — The same Ingredients 
are used in both soft soap and hard 
soap, and soft soap may be purified 
and hardened by boiling and by the 
addition of salt as above described. 
Glauber's salts (sulphate of soda) 
melted by fire in a thick iron kettle 
wiU harden soaps which would other- 
wise be too soft. Add about 1 pound 
of fused salt to 20 pounds of the 
soap. 

Stir 1 poimd of potash lye into 1 
quart of cold water until dissolved. 
Set aside until it is cold. Mix 2 table- 
spoonfuls each of powdered borax 
and powdered ammonia into 1 gill of 
water. Melt with gentle heat S potmds 
of purified grained fat. Pour the cold 
lye gradually into the warm grease, 
and stir in the borax and ammonia, 
mixing and stirring vigorously for 15 
or 20 minutes. Line a tight wooden 
box or pan vrith muslin or greased 
paper, and pour the soap into it to 
cool and harden. When hard cut into 
bars with cord or annealed wire. If 
the fat has been properly clarified, 
this soap is said to be clear and white 
and will float on water. It is a. pow- 
erful cleanser. 

Or dissolve 1 pound of potash lye 
in a gallon of boiling water. Let this 
stand over night and pour off the 
clear liquid. Add a second gallon of 
boiling water, put the lye in a kettle, 
and raise it to a boil. Now pour in a 
thin stream 4 pounds of melted grease 
heated to the boiling point. Stir con- 
stantly until an emulsion is formed 
and simmer from four to six hours. 
Then add another gallon of hot water 
in which is dissolved a teacupful of 
salt. To test if the soap is done lift 
some of it on a cold knife blade; if 
it is ropy and clear and cools quickly 
the mixture is saponified. This makes 
about 25 pounds of a cheap white 
soap of good cleansing qualities for 
general family use. 



SOAP AND SOAP MAKING 



193 



To Pack and Preserve Soap. — ^When 
the separation of soap from the lye 
is complete, it may be removed by 
means of skimmers and placed in 
shallow square boxes over which a 
loose piece of muslin has previously 
been thrown to prevent the soap from 
sticking. Or it may be cooled and 
solidified by pouring it into a wash- 
tub or firkin previously soaked in 
water. When cold, it may be cut into 
small bars by the use of a smooth. 




" Cut into Bars with a Wire." 

hard cord or an annealed copper wire. 
A knife chips and consequently wastes 
the soap. Now pack the bars corn- 
cob fashion on slat shelves in a cool, 
dry place to season and become thor- 
oughly dry and hard. If the soap is 
used green it dissolves too readily and 
a good deal of it is wasted. When 
thoroughly dried it will last fully 
twice as long. For this reason it is a 
good plan to make soap in large quan- 
tities. Those who are in the habit of 
purchasing soap should buy it by the 
box and allow it to thoroughly season 
before using. 

The above are general principles 
and directions for soap making. We 
will now proceed to give particular 
household recipes for various kinds 
and quantities of homemade soaps to 
meet all household requirements: 



Hard Potash Soaps. — The following 
are good family recipes; we especially 
recommend the third. 

Dissolve 1 pound of potash in 10 
quarts of boiling water. Add slowly 
3 pounds of melted grease, stirring 
constantly. Now add J pound of 
borax. Boil and stir until saponified. 
This requires 4 or 5 hours. 

Or dissolve 1 pound of potash in 2 
quarts of boiling water. Add S pounds 
of melted grease, stirring constantly. 
Let stand 24 hours. Add 1 gallon of 
boiling water. Boil and stir until 
saponified. 

Dissolve 1 pound of potash in 2J 
pints of cold water. The union of 
potash and water generates great 
heat, hence care must be taken not to 
allow the mixture to touch the skin or 
clothing. Stir with a glass rod or 
piece of stick until dissolved. It must 
not be used until cold. Meantime mix 
3 teaspoonfuls each of powdered 
borax and ammonia in half a cup of 
water. Melt SJ pounds of clarified 
grease, strain, and cool to about blood 
heat. Pour the warm grease into 
the cold lye and beat up the mass 
with an egg beater, adding grad- 
ually the borax and ammonia. Stir 
until a complete emulsion is formed, 
which will require 10 or 15 minutes. 
Pour into wet tub or other mold to 
cool. 

Or put soft soap in a large kettle 
and raise to a boil. Then add 1 pint 
of common salt for each gallon of 
soft soap, stirring vigorously until the 
salt is dissolved. Take off the fire 
and let stand over night. Skim the 
soap off the lye, scrape off the dark, 
soft dregs that stick to the lower side 
of the cakes, cleanse the kettle, cut 
the soap into thin shavings, return 
to the kettle with weak lye, and boil 
once more. When boiling add another 
pint of salt for each gallon of soap, 
and allow to cool. 

When cold and hard the soap may 
be removed and dried, the dregs being 
scraped from the lower side as be- 
fore. The amount of salt to use may 
be determined by continuing to add 
salt and stirring until the soap curdles 



194 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



and takes on a whitish color. To test 
the soap, place a small amount on a 
plate and as it (^ools observe its color 
and consistency. If it contains too 
much alkali it will not granulate. In 
that case add a little clean fat, stir- 
ring vigorously. 

Melt 5i pounds of clear-grained fat 
and strain through a coarse cloth. Al- 
low the grease to cool, but before it 
hardens add 1 pound of caustic pot- 
ash dissolved in 3 pints of cold water. 
Stir vigorously until the mixture 
thickens. The soap is improved by 
letting it stand in a warm, dry place 
for S or 6 days. 

Yellow Hard Soap from Soft Soap. 
— To make a good yellow soap from 
soft soap observe the following pro- 
portions: eight pounds of good soft 
soap, 4 pounds of sal soda, 3 ounces 
of borax, 1 ounce of ammonia, i 
pound of powdered resin. Dissolve 
all in 24 quarts of water and boil 30 
minutes. 

To Increase Soaip. — An easy way to 
increase the quantity and value of or- 
dinary soap bought at the store is by 
dissolving the bars of soap and add- 
ing other ingredients. Dry the bars 
and slice them with a knife or run 
them through a meat chopper. Dis- 
solve by boiling with hot water. The 
following proportions may be ob- 
served : 

Four pounds of white bar soap, 1 
pound of sal soda, 4 gallons of soft 
water. Ready as soon as dissolved. 

Or i pound of hard or soft soap, J 
pound of sal soda, 3 quarts of soft 
water. Boil 20 minutes. 

Or 5 pounds of hard soap (or 7 
pounds of soft soap), 4 pounds of sal 
soda, 2 pounds of borax, 1 ounce of 
ammonia, 24 quarts of water. Boil 
20 minutes. 

To make hard yellow soap of the 
last, add J pound of powdei-ed resin. 

Or 2 pounds of yellow bar soap, 2 
pounds of sal soda, 2 quarts of water. 
This is a good laundry soap to boil 
clothes in, but as the sal soda contains 
an excess of alkali care must be taken 
not to let the clothes stand in the suds 
and to rinse them very thoroughly. 



SODA SOAPS 

Soda Soaps. — ^A favorite method of 
soap making is the saponification of 
various fats and oils by the use of 
caustic soda. As a rule soda soaps 
are hard soaps, soft soap being or- 
dinarily produced from potash. Caus- 
tic soda is now produced so cheaply 
that the commercial article is ordina- 
rily used in soap making, and domes- 
tic hard soap can be made in this way 
about as cheaply as by the earlier 
methods of leaching wood ashes to 
obtain caustic potash or boiling sal 
soda with lime. 

To prepare a caustic soda lye for 
soap making, dissolve 3 parts of sal 
soda in S times as much boiling water. 
In a separate stone vessel slake 1 part 
of quicklime with 3 parts of water, 
mix to a cream and add in a thin 
stream to the boUing solution of sal 
soda, stirring constantly. Mix and 
boil for 10 or 15 minutes, remove 
from the fire and let the solution 
settle. Pour off the clear liquid from 
the sediment and the lye will be 
ready for use. The strength of the 
lye may be increased by boiling down 
over a brisk fire, leaving off the cover 
of the kettle to admit the air. 

Or, if desired, the boiling may be 
continued until all the water is evapo- 
rated and a melted residue is left, 
which may be poured into molds and 
bottled for future use. This is caus- 
tic soda, and may be dissolved in hot 
water when required to form a caustic 
soda lye. 

There is no danger in making soaps 
by this process if the solution is al- 
lowed plenty of time to settle and the 
clear liquid is poured off in such a 
way as not to retain any of the sedi- 
ment of slaked lime. If a suitable 
quantity of grease is used all the 
caustic soda contained in the lye wiU 
unite with it and become neutralized. 
A i^ure hard soap containing no free 
alkali or other injurious substance will 
be the result. The following are a 
number of standard family recipes: 

Dissolve 3 pounds of sal soda in IJ 
gallons of soft water. Slake separate- 



SOAP AND SOAP MAKING 



195 



ly in a stone vessel 2 pounds of fresh 
quicklime in 3 quarts of soft water 
and stir to a cream. Bring the soda 
solution to a boil, pour in the slaked 
lime in a thin stream, let the mixture 
boil up well, remove from the fire, 
Vnd let stand over night to settle. 
Now carefully pour oflf the clear 
liquid so as not to disturb the sedi- 
ment. Melt down in a clean soap ket- 
tle 3 pounds of clarified grease or fat 
with a little water, add, if desired, 4 
ounces of borax, pour in the soda lye 
in a thin stream, stirring constantly, 
and boil until saponified. 

Soak a wooden paU or tub in water 
and pour the soap into this to hard- 
en. When hard cut into bars with a 
thin wire and stack up corncob fash- 
ion to dry. Add perfume if desired 
at the rate of about J to J oimce fcr 
this quantity, just after the soap is 
taken from the fire, stirring it into 
the Uquid mass thoroughly before it 
is poured into the pail or tub to cool. 
This is a favorite domestic soap of 
good quality for household purposes, 
and if carefully made according to 
directions can be used in washing the 
most delicate woolen goods and simi- 
lar articles. 

Or dissolve 6 pounds of sal soda in 
2J gallons of soft water, and in a 
separate vessel slake 1 poimd of fresh 
quicklime in 2 quarts of soft water. 
Bring the soda solution to a boU, 
pour in the lime in a thin stream. 
Let stand over night. Pour off the 
clear soda lye. Dissolve 6 pounds of 
clarified grease or fat in the soap 
kettle, pour in the soda lye in a thin 
stream, and boil until saponified. Add 
for this quantity 4 to 1 ounce of any 
desired essential oil to perfume after 
the soap has been removed from the 
fire, stirring thoroughly before it is 
poured into the tub or kettle to cool. 

Hard Soap from Caustic Soda. — 
Slake 3 pounds of fresh quicklime 
with 3 times its bulk of water, and 
dissolve 3 pounds of sal soda in 2 
gallons of hot water. Mix these in- 
gredients in a tub or wash boiler ; add 
2 gallons of boiling water, stirring 
vigorously. When the mixture has 



settled, pour off the clear liquor, which 
is soda lye, into the soap kettle, and 
add 2 pounds of melted clarified 
grease, pouring in a thin stream and 
stirring vigorously. Add also 2 ounces 
of powdered borax. Boil slowly for 
10 or 15 minutes, when the mixture 
should become thick and stringy. 
When cold this will be found to be a 
good hard soap for family use. The 
longer it can be dried and cured the 
better. 

Hard Soap with Sal Soda. — Dis- 
solve 4 bars of shaved yellow soap in 
2 gallons of soft water; add 2 pounds 
of sal soda and 4 ounces of borax. 
Boil and stir vigorously imtil the in- 
gredients are thoroughly incorporated. 
Pour the soap into a washtub previ- 
ously soaked in water to prevent stick- 
ing, and just before it sets add IJ 
ounces of aqua ammonia, stirring thor- 
oughly. Allow 3 or 4 days to harden, 
cut in bars, pack, and cure. 

Soda Soaps — Not Neutral. — For 
rough work, as washing coarse gar- 
ments, scouring, washing greasy pots 
and kettles, and for the use of me- 
chanics and laborers, as printers, 
blacksmiths, machine-shop men, and 
the like, it is quite customary to make 
a hard soap containing an excess of 
alkali. But it should be carefully 
noted that such soaps are not suitable 
for washing paint or delicate fabrics, 
and that they have a tendency to chap 
and roughen the skin. Soaps of this 
kind are made by melting down a 
good hard soap containing no excess 
of alkali with a suitable quantity of 
caustic soda lye. As the fat con- 
tained in the soap has already neu- 
tralized as much alkali as it is capable 
of acting upon, the result is merely 
the addition of a quantity of free 
alkali which, of course, increases the 
cleansing power of the soap by giving 
it a caustic quality. 

To make a soap of this kind put J 
pound of fresh quicklime in an earth- 
en jar and pour over it 2 quarts of 
boiling water. Let stand a couple of 
hours, stirring frequently, allow the 
sediment to settle, and pour off the 
clear liquid into the soap kettle. Add 



196 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVEEIES 



3 gallons of soft water, 2 pounds of 
hard white neutral soap, shaved, and 
IJ pounds of sal soda; boil, stirring 
constantly until all the ingredients are 
thoroughly mixed and dissolved and 
fuUy saponified. Now stir in 1 ounce 
of salt. Remove from the fire and 
pour into a well-soaked wooden tub 
or pail. This recipe makes a thick 
soft soap suitable for all coarse laun- 
dry and other purposes. 

Or, for a hard soap of this kind, 
first prepare a caustic soda lye by dis- 
solving 1 pound of sal soda in IJ 
gallons of soft water, and slaking in 
a separate stone vessel 8 ounces of 
fresh quicklime in 2 quarts of soft 
water. Bring the soda solution to a 
boil, pour in the sleiked lime in a thin 
stream, boil up 10 or IS minutes, 
stirring constantly, and let stand over 
night to settle. Now pour off the 
clear solution, taking care not to dis- 
turb the sediment. Add SJ pounds 
of hard white neutral soap, shaved 
thin, and bring to a boil, stirring con- 
stantly imtil the soap is dissolved. 
Remove from the fire and stir in 1 
ounce of borax, J ounce of alum with 
J to 1 ounce of any desired perfume. 
Let cool and add, if desired, 2 table- 
spoonfuls of benzine. Pour into a 
weU-soaked wooden vessel to cool, and 
cut into bars with a thin wire. 

Or bring to a boU in a soap kettle 
3 gallons of soft water. Stir in IJ 
pounds of sal soda and i pound of 
borax, until dissolved. Add in a thin 
stream J poimd of melted tallow, stir- 
ring constantly, and S pounds of good 
hard yellow soap, shaved fine. Stir 
until all the ingredients are thorough- 
ly mixed and saponified. Slake in a 
separate vessel 4 or S pounds of fresh 
quicklime, and rub it through a coarse 
sieve to free it from lumps. Add as 
much of the fresh-slaked lime as can 
be stirred in. This is a very strong 
soap, only suitable for coarse work, 
but it will cut all kinds of grease, ink, 
tar, etc. 

Soda Soft Soaps — Not Neutral. — 
Dissolve in 2 gallons of boiling water 
1 pound of sal soda, and shave in 3 
pounds of hard white neutral soap or 



hard white or yellow soap of the best 
quality. Boil up 5 or 10 minutes, 
stirring constantly, and pour into a 
weU-soaked wooden tub or other ves- 
sel to cool. Like other soft soaps this 
preparation contains an excess of al- 
kali and is only suitable for coarse 
work, but it is a powerful cleanser. 
Other ingredients, as aqua ammonia, 
benzine, and the like, may be added 
to this soap if desired. 

Or dissolve in 2 gallons of soft 
water J pound of sal soda, 3 pounds 
of hard white soap, and add J ounce 
of aqua ammonia and 4 ounces of 
borax. 

BOSIN SOAP 

Soap with Bosin — Common Yellow 
Soap. — ^While making hard soap the 
addition of rosin increases its weight 
and bulk more than its value. Where 
rosin is used it is necessary to melt 
up the cake of soap with water after 
it has been removed from the lye, and 
boil. After boiling the mixture must 
be allowed to stand until cool, when 
the hard upper portion vrill be found 
to be pure yellow soap, and the soft 
lower portion containing the dregs 
can be scraped off and used another 
time. Rosin does not make true soap, 
but is useful in diluting animal fats, 
and when carefully prepared with 
strong alkalies and in not too large 
a proportion, it is of advantage be- 
cause it is cheap and helps to make a 
good lather. 

Rosin Soap. — A good method of 
making a rosin soap, where it is de- 
sired to incorporate as much rosin as 
possible, is to saponify the rosin and 
the grease separately. By this means 
about IS per cent of rosin can be 
used to advantage. Some cheap soaps 
contain as much as 2S or 30 per 
cent of rosin, but these are soft and 
apt to leave a resinous coating on 
the hands, with an offensive smell, 
and are in other respects unsatisfac- 
tory. 

One gallon of strong lye wDl sapon- 
ify about 8 pounds of rosin. To ac- 
complish this, first reduce the rosin to 



SOAP AND SOAP MAKING 



197 



a powder, raise the lye to a boil, and 
introduce the rosin gently, stirring 
vigorously. Keep the mixture sim- 
mering at the boiling point and stir 
constantly, otherwise the rosin will 
form in a cake at the top of the lye 
that will retard the operation. At 
best it will require about two hours. 
Meantime saponify the grease in an- 
other kettle, and when both are done 
and still hot pour the rosin into the 
soap grease, boil, and stir vigorously 
imtil thoroughly incorporated. The 
addition of a small quantity of palm 
oil to the tallow wUl improve the soap 
by rendering it transparent and by 
giving it an agreeable flavor. 

English Bar Soap. — Take 1 gallon 
of soft water, 1 pound of good stone 
lime, 3J pounds of sal soda, 1 ounce 
of borax, 2J pounds of tallow or 
other animal fat, If pounds of pulver- 
ized rosin, and 1 ounce of beeswax. 
First bring the water to a boil, then 
add gradually the lime and soda, stir- 
ring vigorously. Next add the borax. 
Boil and stir until dissolved. Pour 
in the melted fat in a thin stream, 
stirring vigorously; add the rosin and 
beeswax; boU and stir until it thick- 
ens and cools in molds. This old-time 
English method is a favorite family 
recipe throughout the United States. 

Or dissolve 6 pounds of sal soda 
and 3 pounds of quicklime in 4 gal- 
lons of soft water. Let the mixture 
settle and pour off the clear soda lye. 
Raise the lye to a boil and add grad- 
ually 6 pounds of melted lard, mix- 
ing gradually until it saponifies. This 
is a good soap for all domestic pur- 
poses. 

Soft Kosin Soap — Cold Process. — 
Mix 3 ounces of powdered rosin with 
3 pounds of lard. Add 3 pounds of 
potash. Mix and set aside 5 or 6 
days. Place in a cask with 5 gal- 
lons of boiling water and stir fre- 
quently for about 2 weeks. This 
recipe will produce about 100 poimds 
of good soap. 

Kosin Soap from Soda. — Dissolve 
6 pounds of sal soda and 6 pounds of 
quicklime in 10 quarts of water. Boil 
from 20 minutes to a half hour. Re- 



move from the fire and allow it to 
settle. Draw off the clear soda lye, 
bring it to a boil, and add 1 pound of 
powdered rosin and 7 pounds of melt- 
ed fat. Boil until saponified, which 
will require a half hour or more. 

Or use 3 pounds of sal soda and 8 
ounces of stone lime with 3 quarts of 
soft water to make a lye. Mix to- 
gether, boil, settle, and pour off the 
clear lye. Melt separately 1 pound 
of tallow, 14 ounces of rosin, and 2 
ounces of palm oil. Bring the clear 
lye to a boil and add gradually the 
other ingredients. Mix, stir, and boil 
until saponified, which yill require 
20 to 30 minutes. This is a well- 
known German recipe. 

SPECIAL SOAPS 

A Soap from Caustic Soda lye. — 
Use 3 pounds of quicklime and 6 
pounds of sal soda, with 4 gallons of 
soft water to make a lye. Mix, boil, 
settle, and pour off the clear lye. 
Bring the lye to a boil and add 6 
pounds of melted lard, stirring and 
boiling until it saponifies. 

Whale-oil Soap. — This is prepared 
from whale-oil foot, a sediment pro- 
duced in refining whale oil, by sapon- 
ification with soda lye. It is used to 
destroy insects. 

Soap Bark. — This substance, which 
can be bought of all druggists, is a 
good cleansing material for dark, sol- 
id-colored garments. It cannot be 
used for light colors, as it has a ten- 
dency to stain them. 

Make an infusion of the soap bark 
by simmering it with gentle heat in 
water kept just at the boiling point 
for 2 or 3 hours, in the proportion 
of 6 cents' worth of bark to 1 quart 
of boiling water. Strain and bottle 
for future use. This may be used 
with a sponge to remove grease spots, 
afterwards rinsing with clear soft 
water. 

Scouring Soap. — Melt the scraps of 
soap left in the kitchen and laundry, 
or melt up any good white or yello^v 
soap and add about half as much 
more, according to preference, of 



198 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVEEIES 



marble dust, powdered pumice stone, 
or a good quality of clean dry sand. 
The scouring soaps bought in the 
market usually cost about as much 
for sand and other impurities as for 
actual soap. Hence they are not eco- 
nomical to buy. 

Soap from Beef Gall. — Saponify 
with gentle heat in a copper kettle or 
earthenware jar, placed in a double 
boiler, 1 pound of cocoanut oil by 
adding J pound of caustic soda and 
stirring constantly. Add J pound of 
hot white spirits of turpentine; sim- 
mer with gentle heat 3 or 4 hours, 
and then bring to a boil. When 
the contents have worked clear add 1 
pound of oxgall. Now add from 1 
to 3 pounds of shaved castile soap, 
stirring until the mixture is of about 
the consistency of dough. Take off 
the fire and allow to cool. This is a 
splendid soap for washing delicate 
fabrics, fine silk, lace, and ribbons, 
and is especially recommended for 
delicate colored articles, as it will not 
cause the colors to run. 

Masquere's Acid Soap. — Shave 1 
pound of hard white castile soap in 
enough water to make a stiff paste. 
Add i ounce of oil of vitriol, gradu- 
ally rubbing the mass in a mortar or 
earthenware bowl until the acid is 
thoroughly incorporated. This is a 
strong detergent, to be used where an 
alkali would be harmful. 

Castile or Marseilles Soap. — This 
soap is usually imported and is made 
in southern Europe. It is based on 
olive oil. But as the pure olive oil 
produces a hard, brittle soap difficult 
to dissolve in water, it is usually 
combined with about 20 per cent of 
rape-seed oil. This soap is noted for 
its purity, freedom from animal odors, 
and lasting quality. It is much used 
for the toilet, especially for infants, 
and for laces and delicate fabrics. 

Other vegetable oil soaps tnay be 
made from castor oil and palm oil. 
The palm oil has a strong yellow color 
and a rather agreeable odor. Hence 
it is often used to scent and give a 
certain transparency to yeUow soap 
and to disguise the presence of rosin. 



Marine Soap. — A soap based upon 
the oil of the cocoanut. It is often 
used to wash in salt water for the 
reason that it is not decomposed eas- 
ily by a weak solution of salt. It is 
remarkable for extreme hardness and 
for the quantity of water it will take 
up without becoming soft. 

Sand Soaps. — These are ordinary 
soaps containing a mechanical mixture 
of sand, powdered pumice, fuller's 
earth, and alumina. They are useful 
for scouring purposes, but should be 
sold much cheaper, bulk for bulk, than 
pure soaps. These soaps have been 
replaced on the market in recent years 
by soaps containing a mixture of solu- 
ble glass or sand combined with sodi- 
um. This is a weak alkaline com- 
pound. Hence the soaps containing 
them are alkaline, and unless they are 
rendered neutral by combining the al- 
kali with rosin or fatty acids they 
may be injurious to the skin or to 
delicate fabrics. 

Soap — Odds and Ends. — There are 
several useful ways of disposing of 
soap scraps. Dry them out thorough- 
ly on tins in a warm oven, run them 
through a meat chopper (which can, 
of course, be easily cleaned after- 
wards), pound to a powder, mix with 
bran or oatmeal, and place in small 
cheese-cloth bags for the bath. 

Or, when the scraps have accumu- 
lated, boil them with water until they 
melt and thicken. Use just enough 
water to keep them from burning. 
Pour into small molds like can covers, 
and allow them to harden. These give 
you new cakes of soap. 

Or make a jelly of bits of fine wliite 
soap by melting a cupful of broken 
bits in a pint of hot water. Or run 
the soap through a meat cutter, or 
shave fine and melt with gentle heat. 
The soap will jell when cold. This 
soap jelly is useful in washing deli- 
cate fabrics, as silks, laces, and rib- 
bons, and also for the toilet. 

Or take a small spice can, fiit a 
round stick of wood inside to keep 
the can in shape, and perforate the 
bottom and top by driving nails 
through the can into the wood. Put 



SOAP AND SOAP MAKING 



199 



soap scraps in this and use as a soap 
shaker in washing dishes. 

tlses of Soap. — Common yellow soap 
will 

Stop a mouse hole effectually. 

Make bureau drawers and windows 
which are inclined to stick work 
smoothly. 

Take the pain from a burn. 

Cut up fine (a quarter of a bar) 
and dissolved in strong, hot borax 
water, clean plated silverware. Let 
soak two or three hours in the solu- 
tion, and little rubbing will be 
needed. 

Combined with brown sugar, bring 
painful swellings to a head, and will 
draw out a splinter from under the 
nail. 

Rubbed on a nail, prevent the wood 
through which it is driven from split- 



ting. It is often used by carpenters, 
who drive the nail through the bar 
of soap before using. 

Mixed with stove blacking, lessen 
the labor of applying and improve re- 
sult. 

Stop a leak in a boiler in emergency 
cases. 

Quickly remove the odor of perspi- 
ration. 

Serve as a substitute for wax to 
point darning yarn. 

The inner wrappers are useful to 
clean flatirons. 

Use Plenty of Each. — A bar of 
laundry soap, valued at five cents for 
the best, saved at the expense of an 
hour of the laundress's time, value 
eighteen cents, to say nothing of the 
wear and tear on clothes occasioned 
by the extra rubbing, is extravagance. 



CHAPTER VI 

WASH DAY 

THE LAUNDRY— LAUNDRY UTENSILS— NATURE OF THE PROCESS 
—WATER FOR THE LAUNDRY— LABOR-SAVING METHODS, WASH- 
ING FLUIDS, ETC.— COLORED GOODS— LACES AND LACE CUR- 
TAINS—SILKS AND SATIN— WOOLENS. WORSTEDS, AND FLAN- 
NELS—DRYING CLOTHES 



THE LATJNDEY 

The contrast between the piles of 
discarded garments and soiled table 
linen accumulated at the close of the 
week, and the same articles when 
ready to be stored away after having 
been perfectly laundered, is most 
striking; but all housekeepers know 
how difficult it is to bring about this 
transformation. 

If the washing is sent away, or a 
washerwoman is employed, it is sur- 
prising to find how many different 
ways there are of washing badly. 
Either the clothes are not clean, or 
they take on a yellow or blue tinge, 
or they are musty and lack the bright- 
ness and glossy whiteness of perfectly 
laundered articles, or they may even 
be rotted and entirely ruined. Those 
who do their own washing know that 
these difficulties may be overcome by 
painstaking and hard labor. On the 
other hand, those who are constantly 
seeking to find an easy method and 
try every one of the many labor-sav- 
ing plans recommended to them, often 
find that they have jumped out of the 
frying pan into the fire. 

There is probably no one "best 
way" of washing. Family tradition 
and local individual customs usually 
control the routine of wash day. In 
other words, most women do what 
their grandmothers have done, what 
their neighbors do, and what they 
have always been in the habit of do- 
ing. In many cases the result is, on 
the whole, satisfactory. We believe. 



however, that every woman who does 
her own washing or controls the work 
of her laundress will be benefited by 
knowing just what goes on in the 
washtub and the boiler, and just how 
results that are undesirable may be 
changed for those to be preferred. 
There will always be different ways 
of ordering the routine of wash day 
as long as women differ in their tastes 
and personal preferences. According- 
ly, we outline a number of methods 
and suggest many different ideas. If 
these are tried experimentally from 
time to time we believe that most 
women will find among them sugges- 
tions that they will wish to adopt 
permanently, and that in many cases 
will revolutionize wash day and make 
it comparatively free from discom- 
fort and hard labor. 

LAUNDRY UTENSILS 

Utensils for Washing. — The list of 
utensils for the laundry includes wash 
boiler, wringer, washboard, washing 
machine, three or four tubs, two or 
three pails, clothes stick, dipper, and 
large and small clothes baskets. Wood- 
en tubs and pails are the most com- 
mon, but those made of paper or wood 
pulp are to be preferred, as they are 
lighter and will not fall to pieces if 
allowed to dry. 

The Boiler. — The ordinary tin boil- 
ers are commonly used, but a copper 
or steel boiler enameled white on the 
inside and painted some suitable color 
outside is the best. Tubs and boilers- 



200 



WASH DAY 



201 



should be fitted with faucets to avoid 
lifting and the liability of accident 
in carrying hot suds from place to 
place. With good care a wash boiler 
should last a lifetime. Hence it is 
advisable to buy the best. 

The Wringer. — The principal cost 
of a wringer is in the rubber rollers, 
and it is true economy to buy an ar- 
ticle that has rolls made of pure rub- 
ber, and that may cost $5 or $6, 
rather than a cheap article having 




' VtensiU for the Laundry.' 



rollers made of a composition that 
will last but a short time. When the 
rollers begin to wear, wrap them 
round with straps of strong, un- 
bleached cotton cloth. This wiU 
lengthen their usefulness many years. 
Washing Machine. — ^We especially 
recommend the purchase of a good 
washing machine. Like the sewing 
machine this instrument has a very 
important bearing upon the welfare 
of the family by lessening the physical 
labor devolving upon the wife and 
mother, and thus saving much of her 
energy for the higher and more ele- 
vating duties of the household. We 
believe that any of the standard makes 
of washing machines are to be recom- 
mended in preference to the ordinary 
washboard, which is only a relic of 
barbarism. But we especially recom- 
mend the make which contains an in- 



ner cylinder in which the clothes are 
placed, and which is revolved in an 
outer cylinder containing water. This 
method tends to cleanse the clothes 
evenly and with the least possible 
wear. Other makes accomplish the re- 
sult by holding the clothes stationary, 
agitating the water, and squeezing the 
goods, very much after the fashion of 
the old-style clothes pounder; and 
still others revolve the garments in 
the tub by means of prongs, reversing 
the motion from time to time. The 
last method is perhaps the least satis- 
factory. When the • clothes are sud- 
denly stopped and sent backward by 
the reverse motion they are subjected 
to a considerable strain. But even 
this method wears out the garments 
far less than does rubbing on the 
washboard, and we strongly recom- 
mend some washing machine to every 
household. If the clothes are first 
boiled with soap and kerosene, or 
other good washing fluid, they can be 
run through the washer in about five 
minutes. Colored clothes cannot, of 
course, be boiled, and will require a 
longer time to wash. 

Small Utensils. — A small toy wash- 
board is useful for washing dish tow- 
els, hand towels, handkerchiefs, hose, 
and light neckwear; also to take to 
simimer resorts on vacations, as laun- 
dry bills in these places are always 
considerable. A small flatiron is also 
useful for ironing ruffles, puflSngs, or 
laces. Both these articles can be put 
in the trunk, and the iron can be 
heated over an alcohol lamp and used 
to press ribbons and neckwear. A 
S-gallon lard can, which can be pur- 
chased for 25 cents, is u useful sub- 
stitute for a boiler in washing small 
articles that are too dainty to put in 
the regular wash. 

Or small articles may be inclosed in 
cloth bags before being put in the 
wash boiler. 

NATUEE or THE PEOCESS 

Objects of Washing. — Dirt has been 
described as " matter which is out of 
place." The substances which soil 



202 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



garments and household linen are un- 
objectionable in their proper places, 
but become dirt when transferred to 
wearing apparel and linen, and re- 
quire to be removed by washing. These 
substances are principally of three 
classes; fruit, acids, ink, and other 
things which produce stains; animal 
oils, grease, or fats from the oily exu- 
dations from the body in perspira- 
tion; or, in the case of table linen, 
from foods or from other sources; 
and particles of earth and other sol- 
ids, either mixed with grease, or caught 
in the texture of the fabric. Stains 
require special treatment according to 
the nature of the substance which pro- 
duces them; greasy substances, as oils 
or fats, require to be decomposed by 
the use of an alkali, in soaps or oth- 
erwise; and particles of earth and 
other substances, when set free from 
the grease in which they are usually 
imbedded, may be removed by the 
mechanical operations of rubbing and 
rinsing. Aside from stains, the most 
difScult part of washing is tlie decom- 
position, without injury to the fab- 
rics, of greasy substances by the ac- 
tion of an alkali. Unless this point 
is clearly understood, good results in 
washing will come rather from good 
luck than from good management. 

The means employed to remove dirt 
on fabrics are soaking, boiling, rub- 
bing, and rinsing, with the use of an 
alkali either in soaps or in the various 
preparations known as washing pow- 
ders and washing fluids. 

Soaking. — The object of soaking 
garments is to soften the dirt and 
loosen it by swelling the fabric. There 
is no objection to soaking the clothes 
in pure soft water for a reasonable 
time, but soaking them over night in 
water with soap and washing fluids or 
powders is not advisable. The first 
effect of the alkali contained in soap 
is to soften the greasy substances 
which cause dirt to adhere to the fab- 
ric, and to render them soluble in 
water. But if these substances are 
not immediately removed by washing 
and rinsing, another chemical action 
takes place which produces compounds 



that, while not always visible to the 
eye, are very much more difficult to 
remove. This is especially likely to 
be the case if soap or other deter- 
gents are used which contain much 
alkali. The result is often to give 
the clothes a heavy or musty smell 
and a dingy appearance after iron- 
ing. Instead, try soaking the gar- 
ments for about twenty minutes in 
boiling water containing borax. 

Or rub soiled articles with a piece 
of wet soap on the morning of wash 
day and soak in cold water for about 
two hours before washing. 

If clothes are soaked over night 
use pure soft water only, without 
any soap or other washing com- 
pounds. If not, put the clothes to 
soak in cold soft water the very 
first thing in the morning while the 
wash water is heating and breakfast 
is being prepared, first rubbing soiled 
articles, especially the greasy spots, 
with a piece of wet soap before put- 
ting them in the water. 

Rubbing. — Rubbing is, of course, 
merely a mechanical operation, but it 
assists the action of soap and washing 
compounds by removing the greasy 
substances that have been decomposed 
by the alkali and by bringing what 
remains into contact with the alkaline 
suds. 

Right here note a helpful labor- 
saving device. Instead of rubbing 
the clothes in the usual way, lay 
the washboard across the top of the 
tub and apply soap to them with a 
scrubbing brush having rather stiff 
bristles. Use the brush especially for 
the neck, wristbands, and other spots 
which are especially soiled or greasy. 
This cleanses them much more quick- 
ly than rubbing in the usual manner, 
besides being easier for the laundress 
and much less detrimental to the gar- 
ment. This method is especially help- 
ful for men's overalls, heavy blankets, 
and other coarse articles that are dif- 
ficult to clean. Put the clothes through 
a wringer into the second tub and 
wash again, looking them over care- 
fully for dirty spots. 

Boiling. — Boiling is also a mechan- 



WASH DAY 



203 



ical process, as the steam passing 
through the garments agitates them 
and loosens the particles of dirt con- 
tained in their texture. Boiling water 
and steam also increase the activity 
of the alkali in attacking and decom- 
posing the grease. 

Laundry — Binsing. — Rinsing is a 
mechahical operation for removing 
the excess of soap, with the dirt, glyc- 
erin, ana other impurities that have 
been released by the action of the 
washing compounds. 

These processes should be firmly 
fixed in mind, and the nature and 
properties of soap and other cleansing 
compounds should be fully understood 
by all who wish to obtain satisfactory 
results in wasliing. 

The principal object of rinsing 
clothes is to remove the excess of 
soap. Hence they must be thor- 
oughly rinsed until all the suds dis- 
appear from the water. If plenty 
of hot water can be had it should be 
used for the first rinsing, as the soap 
contained in the garment wUl dissolve 
in hot water much more readily than 
in cold. It is customary, however, to 
lift the clothes from the boiler direct- 
ly into a tub of cold rinsing water, 
rinse thoroughly, wring out into a 
second rinsing water, and continue 
rinsing until all trace of soap disap- 
pears. If any soap is left in the gar- 
ments it will imite with the bluing 
and make the clothes yellow. After 
the filial rinsing and bluing the arti- 
cles must be wrung out, rolled in bun- 
dles, and sorted, starched pieces 
being placed in one basket and un- 
starched ones in another, and hung 
up to dry at once. It is a good idea 
to first spread a large, clean cloth in 
the bottom of the basket. 

Plan for Wash Day. — ^The following 
routine is especially recommended: 
get up at daylight and get the wash- 
ing out of the way as early as possi- 
ble. It is surprising how much can 
be accomplished early in the morning 
before the regular routine of the day 
begins. 

First Boiling. — Next fill the boiler 
with clear soft water, or if the water 



is hard, add borax to soften it. Put 
it on the stove and bring to a boil. 
Rinse out the tubs with hot water 
and soap to remove any dust that 
may havie accumulated. When the 
clothes have been well soaked, run 
them through a wringer or wring 
them out lightly by hand, put them 
in tubs half filled with hot water from 
the boiler, and rub on the washboard, 
using plenty of soap. Or use the 
washing machine. 

Second Boiling, — Run them again 
through the wringer and put them in 
a boiler with cold water over the fire. 
The articles may be rubbed separate- 
ly with soap as they come from the 
wringer before being placed in the 
boiler, or shaved hard soap or other 
washing compounds may be dissolved 
in the water in which the clothes are 
boiled. If washing fluids or powders 
are used care must be taken to dis- 
solve them in the water before the 
clothes are put in, as otherwise they 
may settle in the folds of the fabrics 
and eat holes in them with the excess 
of alkali they contain. Let the clothes 
come to a boil, pressing them down 
occasionally with a clothes stick. The 
first boiler should contain the first 
sorting of fine linen, and while these 
are coming to a boil the second sort- 
ing may be in the process of rubbing. 
The boiler should be emptied and re- 
filled with cold water every time a 
new lot is put in. Clothes should be 
lifted from the boiler with a clothes 
stick, held up to drain slightly, and 
placed in a tubful of clear, cold rins- 
ing water, 

WATEE FOR THE lATJlTDEY 

laundry Water Supply. — All water 
for laundry purposes must be soft or 
else the clothes cannot be made clean. 
Hard water that contains lime and 
other mineral substances, or that is 
brackish from its vicinity to the sea, 
will cause the soap to curdle and 
float on its surface. In limestone 
regions and other localities where the 
water is hard, perhaps the best meth- 
od is to collect rain water in a cis- 



204 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



tern or rain-water barrel, but hard 
water can be softened in various ways 
for laundry purposes. 

To Test Water. — To find out wheth- 
er or not water is fit for laundry pur- 
poses, dissolve a little good white soap 
in alcohol and put a few drops of this 
solution into a glassful of water. If 
the water is pure the soap solution 
will be dissolved and the water will 
continue limpid, but if it is impure 
the soap will form into white flakes 
which will tend to float on the sur- 
face. 

To Soften Hard Water. — Bring the 
water to a boil and expose it to the 
air, which may be done by pouring 
it from some little height into a tub 
or other vessel, and afterwards letting 
it stand over night. 

Or boil it with the addition of a 
little baking soda, and afterwards ex- 
pose it to the air. 

Or place a quantity of clean wood 
ashes in a tightly closed woolen bag 
and immerse the bag in a tub of 
water. The required amount of ashes 
can be ascertained by experiment. 

Or use chalk, which may be put 
into the spring or well or used in a 
tub or bucket, the proper amount de- 
pending upon the extent of the im- 
purities, and to be determined in each 
locality by experiment. 

Or add a small quantity of borax 
or potash or soda lye, but care must 
be taken not to use too much, as oth- 
erwise the alkali they contain will in- 
jure the fabrics. 

Or add 1 to 2 tablespoonfuls of 
quicklime to each tubful of water. 
Slake the lime with a little warm 
water, stirring it to a cream, pour 
it into a tubful or boilerful of water, 
and let stand over night or long 
enough to settle to the bottom. Pour 
off the clear water, taking care not to 
disturb the sediment. 

Rain-water Barrel. — A cask to hold 
rain water should be provided with a 
hinged lid or other cover to prevent 
dust and dirt from getting in, and to 
keep out insects that would use it as 
a breeding place. It should be raised 
above the ground by stone or brick, 



and be furnished with a spigot to 
draw off the water for use. 

To Cleanse Soapsuds. — The water 
supply in some localities is exceed- 
ingly limited, and periods of drought 
sometimes occur when it is almost im- 
possible to obtain sufficient water for 
laundry purposes. Under such cir- 
cumstances a tubful or boilerful of 
water may be made to serve for an 
entire washing by cleansing it when 
necessary. This may be done by dis- 
solving a teaspoonful of powdered 
alum in half a cup of boiling water 
and stirring it into a tub or wash 
boiler of soapsuds. The soap will 
curdle and sink with the other im- 
purities to the bottom, leaving the 
water entirely clear and free from 
odor. The clear water may then be 
poured off, taking care not to disturb 
the sediment, and used again. 

XABOE-SAVIITG METHODS, WASHING 
FLTTIDS, ETC. 

Certain compounds added to the 
water in which the clothes are boiled 
are recommended as labor savers. 
Washing fluids and powders contain 
two kinds of ingredients: volatile sub- 
stances, such as kerosene, turpentine, 
alcohol, ammonia, and camphor gum; 
and alkaline substances, as potash and 
soda lyes from wood ashes, sal soda, 
and various brands of commercial lye. 
These powerful chemicals must be used 
with the most intelligent caution. 

First Caution. — If the hands and 
arms are immersed in hot water con- 
taining turpentine, alcohol, ammonia, 
camphor, and similar substances, these 
are absorbed through the pores of the 
skin and may seriously imperil the 
health. Paralysis is said to some- 
times result from this cause. Hence 
it is best to use these compounds 
only in the boiler, and to take the gar- 
ments out of the first rinsing water 
with the clothes stick, especially if 
hot water is used, rather than to im- 
merse the arms therein. 

When turpentine has been used in 
the boiling water the clothes must be 
very thoroughly rinsed, as if any of 



WASH DAY 



&0H 



it remains in garments worn next the 
skin it may cause mischief. 

Second Caution. — Substances that 
are strong in alkali, as potash and 
soda lyes and the like, are powerful 
cleansers, but clothes should not be 
allowed to lie in water that contains 
them for any length of time. If they 
are used in the boiling water the 
clothes must be boiled for a limited 
time and immediately removed and 
rinsed thoroughly. The alkali, as has 
jilready been explained, continues its 
action after decomposing greasy sub- 
stances and attacks the fabrics them- 
selves. It is injurious to the skin if 
not thoroughly rinsed from under- 
wear. 

Third Caution. — All washing pow- 
ders should be thoroughly dissolved 
in the boiling water before the gar- 
ments are added, so that the alkali 
and other ingredients may be present 
in equal strength in all parts of the 
water. If these compounds are add- 
ed after the clothes have been put in 
they may settle in spots in the folds 
of the garments and eat into the fab- 
ric. 

Washing Fluids. — Most washing 
fluids amount to neither more nor less 
than potash or soda lye. In other 
words, they are liquids containing an 
excess of free alkali. Their use is 
quite customary on the ground that 
they do the work quickly and well 
and save labor, but they are open to 
the objection that unless used with 
great caution they tend to rot the 
clothes and to roughen and chap the 
hands and arras of the laundress. 
They are, at best, only suitable for 
the coarser articles, and it is probable 
that their constant use weakens any- 
thing which they are employed to 
clean. 

Caustic Soda lye. — A common fam- 
ily recipe for washing fluid is caustic 
soda lye. Dissolve 1 pound of sal 
soda in 1 gallon of boiling water. 
Slake separately 8 ounces of fresh 
quicklime in 2 quarts of water. Bring 
the soda solution to a boil, pour in 
the slaked lime in a thin stream, stir- 
ring constantly, and let the mixture 



stand over night. Pour off the clear 
lye, taking care not to disturb the 
sediment, and preserve in glass bot- 
tles or stone jugs. When this fluid is 
used it is customary to soak the 
clothes over night in clear watei, 
wring them out, and soap the soiled 
places. The boiler is then half filled 
with water which is brought to a boil 
and 1 teacupful of this fluid is stirred 
in thoroughly, after which the clothes 
are added and boiled for half an hour, 
when they can be cleaned with very 
little rubbing. The injury that the 
lye may do the fabric is not likely to 
be noticed as a result of a single 
washing, and the gradual weakening 
of the garment is likely to be attrib- 
uted to ordinary wear. Hence it is 
often asserted that this and other 
washing fluids can be used without 
rotting ordinary fabrics. But the in- 
jury, though slight, is certain. At aU 
events, if such fluids are used the 
greatest care must be taken not to let 
garments lie long in the suds, to rinse 
them very thoroughly in two or three 
waters and hang them out as quickly 
as possible. This washing fluid may 
be used in hot water for scrubbing 
floors, removing grease spots, and 
cleaning greasy pots, kettles, and the 
like. But care must be taken not to 
use it on tinware or aluminum or 
strong enough to injure the hands. 

Caustic Potash lye. — The basis of 
another class of washing fluids fre- 
quently recommended is potash lye, 
which is perhaps even more injurious 
than caustic soda lye, requiring the 
same cautions and being open to the 
same objections. The addition of 
various other ingredients, as borax, 
ammonia, and the like, may be re- 
garded as beneficial, as they tend to 
increase the cleansing properties of 
the fluid, and thus lessen the amount 
of pure lye necessary to do the work. 

Put J pound of concentrated lye in 
an earthenware jar or iron kettle and 
pour over it 1 gallon of cold water. 
Stir with a wooden stick until dis- 
solved, and let stand until cold. Dis- 
solve, each in a separate vessel, J 
pound of borax, J pound of salts of 



206 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



tartar, and J poiind of lump am- 
monia (not aqua ammonia), using in 
each case as little water as possible. 
After the solution of lye is cold, pour 
into it each of the other solutions in 
a thin stream, stirring constantly, 
pour the mixture into large glass bot- 
tles or earthenware jugs, and cork 
tightly. Use this washing fluid in the 
proportion of 1 or 3 tablespoonfuls 
to each pailful of water. In all cases 
dissolve it in the wash boiler before the 
clothes are put in, for if the clothes 
are put in first and the washing fluid 
afterwards, it will be stronger in some 
places than others, and be more likely 
to injure the garments. 

Or put 1 pound of crude potash in 
an earthenware j ug and pour over it 1 
gallon of soft water. When cold stir in 
i ounce of sal ammoniac and J ounce 
of saltpeter previously dissolved in a 
little soft water. Use this fluid at the 
rate of 1 pint to 6 or 8 gallons of water. 

Or dissolve separately J pound of 
sal soda and J pound of potash lye, 
each in 2 quarts of water. Mix the 
two together and pour into a gallon 
jug. Use a teacupful to a bollerful 
of water. 

Or put 1 can of potash lye in an 
earthenware jar, pour over it 2 gal- 
lons of cold water, and add 1 pound 
of borax and 1 pint of liquid am- 
monia. Pour into stone jugs and cork 
tightly. Use a teacupful to each boil- 
er, and also half a bar of soap shaved 
fine. 

Washing Fluids with Turpentine. 
— Turpentine as a washing fluid, with 
or without other ingredients, as cam- 
phor, alcohol, ammonia, and the like, 
is often recommended, but unless 
great caution is observed it is very 
likely to be injurious. These sub- 
stances, especially turpentine and al- 
cohol, open the pores of the skin and 
thus expose a person to the liability 
of taking cold in hanging out the 
clothes. Their frequent use is also 
debilitating. Hence these substances 
should not be used when washing is 
done by hand. They are only per- 
missible where the clothes are pound- 
ed in the old-fashioned way, or the 



work is done by a washing machine. 
Even breathing the fumes of turpen- 
tine in the steam of the laundry may 
be dangerous under certain circum- 
stances, and, on the whole, these reci- 
pes should be used only with the 
greatest caution. Clothes washed with 
turpentine should be rinsed very thor- 
oughly to remove all traces of it be- 
fore being worn, as otherwise it will 
be injurious to the skin. ' 

To a boUerful of hot water add IJ 
bars of hard soap shaved fine, 1 table- 
spoonful of spirits of turpentine, and 
1 teaspoonful of aqua ammonia; bring 
to a boil and stir until all are dis- 
solved before putting in the clothes. 

Or, in addition to the soap, use 
1 tablespoonful of spirits of turpen- 
tine and 1 tablespoonful of powdered 
borax. 

Or to 6 or 8 gallons of water add 1 
pound of hard soap shaved fine, J 
ounce of spirits of turpentine, and J 
oimce of aqua ammonia. 

Or 1 tablespoonful of kerosene and 

1 tablespoonful of turpentine. 

Or, for a washing flmd, shave 2 
pounds of hard white or yellow soap 
into a saucepan, pour over it 1 quart 
of soft water, and melt with gentle 
heat, stirring frequently. Stir in 1 
tablespoonful of white-wine vinegar, 

2 tablespoonfuls of aqua ammonia, 
and 6 tablespoonfuls of spirits of tur- 
pentine. Pour into large glass bottles 
or stone jugs and cork tightly to pre- 
vent evaporation. Use this fluid at 
the rate of 2 tablespoonfuls to 6 or 8 
gallons of the water in which the 
clothes are soaked, and the same 
quantity in the wash boiler. 

To whiten clothes take spirits of 
turpentine, 1 tablespoonful; powdered 
borax, 1 tablespoonful. Mix well and 
use in the water in which the clothes 
are boiled. 

Or first soap the water in which the 
clothes are to be boiled, then add the 
following: spirits of turpentine, 1 
tablespoonful ; aqua ammonia, 1 table- 
spoonful. Housekeepers who have used 
this washing fluid value it highly. 

Washing Fluids with Sal Soda. — 
Dissolve i pound of sal soda and i 



WASH DAY 



20T 



pound of borax in 1 gallon of boiling 
soft water. Add 2 . gallons of cold 
soft water and 1 ounce of gum cam- 
phor dissolved in J pint of alcohol. 
Stir well and put in corked bottles or 
fruit jars. Add 4 teaspoonfuls of 
this preparation to 1 pint of soft soap 
or 1 bar of hard soap cut into fine 
shavings, and dissolve the whole in a 
boilerful of hot water before putting 
in the clothes. 

Or dissolve J pornid of washing 
soda and J pound of borax in 4 
quarts of boiling soft water. When 
cold add J teacupful of aqua am- 
monia and pour into corked bottles 
or fruit jars. Dissolve in the wash 
boiler in the proportion of 1 teacupful 
to 1 pailful of water before the clothes 
are put in. 

Or dissolve 1 pound of sal soda and 
i pound of quicklime in 6 quarts of 
boiling water. When the mixture has 
settled, pour off and bottle the clear 
liquid, which is soda lye. This is a 
very powerful washing fluid. One 
cupful is added to a boilerful of hot 
water containing 1 pint of soft soap 
or 1 pound of hard soap cut in shav- 
ings wUl thoroughly cleanse and bleach 
the clothes. This fluid tends to bright- 
en rather than to fade the colors of 
calico and colored flannels. The clothes 
must not be allowed to lie in the 
water. The boiling, sudsing, rinsing, 
and bluing must follow each other in 
rapid succession until the clothes are 
hung on the line, which should be by 
ten o'clock in the morning. 

Dissolve in 1 gallon of cold soft 
water 1 pound of concentrated lye 
and 2 oimces each of powdered am- 
monia (muriate of ammonia) and salts 
of tartar. Preserve in glass bottles 
or fruit jars, tightly corked. Use a 
cupful of this fluid with a bar of soap 
and boU IS minutes. 

Or make a saponaceous lye by boil- 
ing 1 gallon of wood ashes in suf- 
ficient soft water to dissolve the ashes, 
then add 3 or 3 handfuls of fresh 
quicklime. Mix thoroughly while boil- 
ing and afterwards cool until the sed- 
iment settles. Draw off the pure 
water and add 1 pint of oil or melted 



grease strained through cheese cloth 
for each 30 quarts of this liquid. 
Ashes from hard wood are the best, 
but if the ashes do not contain a suf- 
ficient amount of alkali a small 
amount of potash or soda may be 
added. The result should be a milk- 
white liquor. Use 1 cupful to a boil- 
erful of water with 1 pound of shaved 
hard soap. 

Or this composition, used by the 
French: hard soap, 1 pound; water, 
6 gallons; spirits of turpentine, i 
ounce; aqua ammonia, i ounce. Mix 
well and bottle ready for use. 

Or brown soap, 3 pounds. Cut it 
up and put it into a clean pot, adding 
1 quart of clear soft water. Set over 
the fire and melt thoroughly, stir- 
ring it up from the bottom occasion- 
ally. Take from the fire and stir in 
real white vinegar, 1 teaspoonf ul ; aqua 
ammonia, 2 large teaspoonfuls; spirits 
of turpentine, 7 large teaspoonfuls. 
Stir all well together, put the mixture 
immediately into a stone jar, and cov- 
er without delay so that the ammonia 
will not evaporate. Keep it closely 
covered. 

Washing Powders. — Commercial 
washing powders, such as pearling, 
soapine, and the like, are said by 
chemists to be composed of hard 
white soap ground to powder and 
mixed with pulverized sal soda in ap- 
proximately equal parts. Hence they 
are liable to the same objections as. 
sal soda, which is well known to con- 
tain an excess of alkali. They are, 
however, useful for dishwashing, scrub- 
bing, and many other purposes. They 
can be made at home much more 
cheaply than they can be purchased. 

To make washing powder, melt in 
a double boiler 1 ounce of good white 
glue in 1 gallon of hot water to make 
a thin glue size. Mix equal parts of 
granulated soda ash with granulated 
sal soda, pulverizing them into grains 
about the size of coarse sand by 
means of a rolling pin. Pour over 
this mixture the solution of glue, or 
use instead pure linseed oil and stir 
until the mass forms a stiff, thick 
paste. Spread out the whole on a 



208 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



table top or other flat surface in a 
warm room to dry. 

Or, instead of the solution of glue, 
use a solution of 1 pint of linseed oil 
to 1 gallon of water. 

Soap Jelly. — Dissolve 1 teaspoonful 
of any good washing powder in a 
cupful of hot water, or dissolve any 
desired quantity of shaved hard white 
or yeUow soap in twice its own bulk 
of hot water, using a double boiler. 
Use instead of soft soap for delicate 
fabrics. 

Kerosene for Washing. — This is a 
favorite labor-saving article in many 
households. Use for each boilerful of 
water 1 pound of good hard soap in 
shavings and 1 teaspoonful of kero- 
sene to each pail of water, or about 
3J tablespoonfuls for a wash boiler 
two thirds full of water. Should it 
be necessary to add more water after 
the first or second boiling, put in J 
pound of shaved soap and 1 table- 
spoonful more of kerosene. This mix- 
ture will not injure fabrics and will 
evaporate when the clothes are laun- 
dered so as to leave no odor. When 
kerosene is used very little rubbing 
will be required. 

Special Hints. — ^When rinsing large 
linen pieces, as sheets, tableclotlis, and 
large towels, gather the middle of the 
piece into the hand and souse the 
edges in the water several times. This 
leaves the selvage smooth and ready 
for the iron. 

If a little cooked starch is put into 
the rinsing water it will add just 
enough stiffness to launder properly 
and wiU give to old linen the appear- 
ance of new. 

A little pipe clay dissolved in the 
water in which the linens are washed 
will assist in cleansing the more 
soiled articles, and also in giving 
them the appearance of having been 
bleached. 

The addition of a teaspoonful of 
paraffin will assist in removing stains. 

A small vegetable brush may be 
used to apply soap and water to the 
spots on the coarser linens, and a nail- 
brush is convenient to use on the deli- 
cate fabrics. 



Fine cotton goods, as lawns, cam- 
brics, and muslins, should not be 
washed with linen, especially un- 
bleached linen, as the latter has a 
tendency to discolor them. 

Delicate dresses of lawn, muslin, 
cambric, and print goods should not 
be boiled or rubbed with soap. They 
should be washed in tepid water in 
which soap has been previously dis- 
solved, rinsed quickly, and dried in 
the shade. 

A quart of bran sewed into a tight 
bag and boiled in the wash boiler 
will assist in cleansing delicate gar- 
ments. 

The addition of a handful of salt 
helps to set the colors of light cam- 
brics and dotted lawns. 

A little beef gall will brighten yel- 
low, purple, or green tints. 

Handkerchiefs. — Handkerchiefs 
used by persons who have affections 
of the nose, throat, and lungs, as 
grippe, catarrh, bronchitis, and the 
Uke, should not be put in laundry 
bags or clothes hampers containing 
the family wash. The easiest and 
most sanitary method of handling 
these articles is to keep for the pur- 
pose a large tin or enameled-ware pan 
containing a strong solution of com- 
mon salt. Drop the handkerchiefs into 
this, place the pan on the stove when 
clear from cooking, and bring to a 
boil. They may now be rinsed with 
clean water and put into the rest of 
the laundry, or the pan may be filled 
with boiling water containing a table- 
spoonful of any good washing pow- 
der, the handkerchiefs returned to it 
and boiled from twenty minutes to 
half an hour, then removed, rinsed, 
and laid aside for ironing. 

To Wash Corsets. — Choose a clear, 
sunny day; make a strong solution of 
good soapsuds and a small amount of 
ammonia, spread the corsets on a 
clean board or table and scrub with 
a good stiff brush until thoroughly 
clean. Apply clear water in the same 
way to rinse them and hang immedi- 
ately in the sun. Do not wring out. 
Let them drip dry, and the shape will 
not be changed. 



WASH DAY 



209 



Or make good warm suds, lay the 
corsets on a washboard and scrub 
thoroughly on both sides with a stiff 
brush. Then scald a little, rinse thor- 
oughly, starch slightly, and dry. When 
ironed they look much better than 
when rubbed on a washboard. 

Special Pieces. — In addition to the 
regular wash day it is often advisable 
to lay aside small muslins, laces, rib- 
bons, and other delicate articles to be 
washed at other times when they can 
have special attention, rather than to 
put them into the weekly wash. Blan- 
kets and other heavy articles can also 
be washed to better advantage by 
thenjselves, and in the season when 
the days are long and bright. 

GOLOBED GOODS 

Care for Colored Goods. — All col- 
ored goods, especially light dress goods 
having delicate colors, as colored lin- 
ens, muslins, lawns, or cambrics; and 
prints, as chintz, ginghams, and cali- 
coes, require special care in washing. 
They must be handled separately from 
other articles, and in many respects 
it is better to ihake a, special job of 
washing fine colored goods on another 
day than the regular wash day. Care 
must be taken in washing colored 
goods that the colors do not soak out 
or run. This may be prevented in 
two ways: by a special process in 
washing, different from the method of 
washing white goods, and by the ad- 
dition of various substances to the 
washing or rinsing water to set the 
colors. 

Cautions for Colored Goods. — The 
best general caution for handling col- 
ored goods is to avoid extremes of 
heat or cold, to avoid hard wringing, 
and to wash and do them up as quick- 
ly as possible. They must not be 
soaked or otherwise delayed in wash- 
ing, boiled, scalded, or exposed to di- 
rect sunlight or the heat of a very 
hot iron. No form of washing soda, 
soft soap, or washing powders or 
fluids containing free alkali should be 
employed. Use pure white or yellow 
neutral soap only for this purpose. 



Neither must they be allowed to 
freeze. 

To prevent the colors from running 
they may be set by adding certain sub- 
stances to the suds or rinsing water 
or both. 

Son'ts for Colored Goods. — Don't 
soak or soap colored goods over 
night. 

Don't boil them, don't wash in hot 
water, don't use washing fluids, wash- 
ing powders, or anything else con- 
taining the slightest particle of sal 
soda. 

Don't put them all into the tub at 
once. 

Don't let them lie any longer than 
necessary in the suds, rinsing water, 
or clothes basket. 

Don't hang them up to dry so that 
the right side will be exposed to the 
hot sun. 

Don't hang them in the sun at all if 
shade is available. 

Don't iron them with a very hot 
iron. 

To Wash Colored Goods. — Sort out 
the calicoes and other prints, colored 
linens, etc., and prepare suds with 
cold or lukewarm water and good 
hard white or yellow soap. Have at 
hand a tub of rinsing water contain- 
ing alum, oxgall, or other substances 
to set the colors. Wash each piece 
separately, commencing with the light- 
est in color, rinse, and wring it out 
as quickly as possible, leaving the re- 
maining pieces in a dry state. Wash 
all the colored articles as quickly as 
possible, turn them wrong side out, 
and hang them up to dry, if possible, 
in the shade. 

To Suds Colored Goods. — Prepare 
suds by shaving hard white soap in 
soft water at the rate of about half 
a bar to two pailfuls of water. Bring 
the water to a boil, remove from the 
fire, and allow it to cool until it will 
bear the hands comfortably. 

Do not rub soap on delicate colored 
goods. Wash the garments quickly. 
Put them in the water one at a time, 
and rub as little as possible; rather 
souse them up and down in the hot 
suds. If the suds become foul, pre- 



210 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



pare a fresh lather. Wash each gar- 
ment by itself as quickly as possible. 

To Wring Colored Goods. — ^Do not 
wring out delicate colored articles, but 
squeeze them gently as dry as possible 
between the hands. 

To Rinse Colored Goods. — Rinse In 
two or three clear rinsing waters, add- 
ing various ingredients, according to 
the goods, to set the colors. 

To Dry Colored Goods. — Select 
bright, clear weather to wash delicate 
and expensive colored garments, and 
when washed hang them to dry in the 
shade. The best goods will fade if 
hung in the sunshine. In freezing 
weather they may be dried indoors by 
the Are, as the colors wUl be irrep- 
arably injured if they are allowed to 
freeze. 

To Wash Calicoes. — An exception 
to the rule against soaking colored 
articles is found in the custom of 
soaking calicoes and other print goods 
in a strong solution of salt before 
washing. Authorities variously recom- 
mend soaking the articles in strong 
salt water for periods of half an hour 
to over night. We would recommend 
experimenting with a sample of the 
goods before soaking delicate or ex- 
pensive fabrics for a long period. 
First soak new calico garments in 
strong salt water. Dissolve 3 gills of 
salt in 1 gallon of hot water, not boil- 
ing. Put in the garments and soak 
until the colors are thoroughly set. 
The time required will vary accord- 
ing to the fabrics, and may be deter- 
mined by experimenting with sam- 
ples. We would recommend IS min- 
utes to a half hour as an average. 

Wash same as other colored goods, 
using alum or oxgall in the suds and 
salt in the rinsing water. Use alum 
preferably for green. 

Black calico may be washed in an 
infusion of potato starch. Peel two 
or three potatoes, scrape them, boil, 
and strain, washing the calico in the 
pure liquid. 

Or wash in an infusion of wheat 
bran as hereinafter suggested. 

Colored Goods — To Fix Their Color. 
— Substances recommended for fixing 



the colors of calicoes and other col- 
ored articles vary with the colors and 
the nature of the fabric. They in- 
clude oxgall, salt, infusion of hay, 
alum, and lemon juice or vinegar; for 
red articles, borax, and for black 
goods lye and black pepper. 

Of these, oxgall and salt are the 
most popular. The gall of an ox can 
be obtained from the butcher. It may 
be preserved by adding to it a hand- 
ful of salt, and keeping it corked 
tightly. A bottle of this preparation 
should be always kept on hand in the 
laundry. Use 1 teacupful to 5 gal- 
lons of water. 

Common salt may be used in the 
proportion of J cupful to 3 gallons 
of water; alum, 1 ounce to each gal- 
lon of water; borax, 1 tablespoonful 
to the gallon; vinegar or lemon juice, 
the same. Add these substances in 
the above proportion to both suds arid 
rinsing water. 

Or use a large tablespoonful of ox- 
gall in the suds and a teaspoonful of 
vinegar in each rinsing water. 

Or use alum in the suds and vine- 
gar in the rinsing water. 

Do not use both oxgall and alum. 

To Fix light, Solid Colors. — To 
permanently fix blue, slate, and stone 
colors in cotton fabrics, dissolve 1 
ounce of sugar of lead in 2J gallons 
of hot water. Stir with a wooden 
stick, and let stand until lukewarm. 
Immerse the garments in this solu- 
tion for 1 to 2 hours, and hang up 
to drip dry in the shade before wash- 
ing. Remember that sugar of lead is 
poisonous; hence, after being dried, 
these articles should be washed thor- 
oughly and rinsed in plenty of clear 
water. 

To Fix Dark, Solid Colors. — To fix 
black and other dark colors, dissolve 
3 cupfuls of salt in 2J gallons of 
water, immerse the articles until they 
are thoroughly saturated, and hang 
them up to drip dry in a shady place. 
Add a tablespoonful of salt to the 
rinsing water. 

Or, to prevent black goods and 
hosiery from turning brown, use very 
strong bluing in the water. For black 



WASH DAY 



211 



goods, also, add a teacupful of lye to 
each pailful of soapsuds in which the 
articles are washed. They must he 
washed quickly and the excess of lye 
thoroughly rinsed out in clear cold 
water to which salt has been added. 

Or, for black goods, prepare an in- 
fusion of 1 tablespoonful of powdered 
black pepper with sufScient water to 
cover the articles, and steep them in 
it for a half hour before washing. 

To Fix Pinks, neds, and Greens. — 
Vinegar is especially recommended 
for pink, red, or green goods to 
brighten the color; salt for black, 
blue, and green colors. Hence, to fix 
pink or green, add i cupful of strong 
vinegar to 2J gallons of water, im- 
merse the articles, and let them drip 
dry In the shade. 

To Fix Red or Scarlet. — For red or 
scarlet table napkins add 1 table- 
spoonfid of borax to each gallon of 
soapsuds when washing. 

To Fix Solid-colored Linens. — A 
strong infusion of common hay made 
by boiling the hay and straining off 
the clear liquor is recommended for 
French linens; black pepper, 1 tea- 
spoonful for each pailful of water, for 
gray and brown linens. 

To Wash Colored Goods with Bran. 
— Delicate lawn and muslin dresses, 
also chintz and cretonne, may be 
washed without soap in an infusion 
of wheat bran. This process cannot 
possibly harm the most delicate fab- 
rics. Boil 1 quart of wheat bran in 
3 quarts of water for about 15 min- 
utes, and strain off the clear liquor 
into the wash water. Boil the bran 
again for IS minutes in an equal 
quantity of water, and strain off the 
resulting infusion into the rinsing 
water. 

For the wash water add to the in- 
fusion of bran about an equal quan- 
tity of clear soft water. Add also, 
to set the colors, a tablespoonful of 
oxgall or a small lump of alum. Use 
no soap, as the bran itself possesses 
suflicient cleansing properties. Wash 
with as little rubbing and wringing as 
possible. 

Rinse first in the lukewarm bran 



water, adding salt, and afterwards in 
clear water containing a little gum 
arable. No starch will be required. 
The bran after having been strained 
may be fed to pigs or chickens. 

To Clean Colored Goods with Raw 
Potatoes. — Grate the potatoes to a 
fine pulp and mix with 1 pint of water 
for each pound of grated potato. Sift 
with a coarse sieve and let the liqmd 
settle until the starch accumulates at 
the bottom. The clear liquid remain- 
ing may be bottled for future use. To 
apply, lay a linen towel over the wash- 
board and spread the soiled garment 
upon it. Sponge with the clear liquid 
and afterwards rinse with clear cold 
water. 

LACES AND LACE CUBTAINS 

To Wash Lace. — To wash cotton or 
linen lace or embroidery prepare suds 
of hard white soap with hot water, to 
which add 1 or 2 teaspoonfuls of 
borax. If much soiled, boil the arti- 
cles in the suds before or after wash- 
ing, or both. Squeeze them with the 
hands or draw them through the fin- 
gers in the suds until clean, rinse in 
clear water, add to the last water 
about i teaspoonful of granulated 
sugar to 1 pint of water, and iron 
without starching. 

White Laces. — White linen and cot- 
ton laces and embroideries may be 
washed in soapsuds in the same man- 
ner as other delicate white goods, ex- 
cept that more care is required in 
their handling. To prepare these goods 
for the laundry, baste the small pieces, 
as doilies and smaller embroideries, 
Battenberg pieces, edging, and the 
like, on a piece of linen or cotton 
cloth larger than the lace. Take care 
to catch every point with basting 
thread. Several small articles can be 
basted on one large piece. After wash- 
ing, if the cloth is stretched, the lace 
will dry in perfect condition without 
ironing. Fine lingerie, as lace waists, 
etc., may be basted inside a pillow 
case or special cotton bag prepared 
with a draw string for this purpose, 
and need not be taken out from the 



212 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



time it is put into the first wash water 
until after it is hung on the line, dried, 
and ready to iron. This prevents the 
lace from being frayed or torn by 
buttons catching in it, etc. Lace edg- 
ing and other long pieces may be 
quickly basted on to a piece of cloth 
with the sewing machine by making 
the stitch long. 

Or, to prepare a long piece of lace 
for the laundry, it may be wound 
around a large glass bottle. First 
surround the bottle with a jacket of 
cotton or linen cloth sewed on. At- 
tach one end of the lace to this cloth 
jacket with basting thread, and roU 
the lace around it, overlapping care- 
fully as in bandaging. Catch the ends 
and edges through the cloth jacket 
with basting thread. 

To Soak Laces. — If lace is much 
soiled it may be soaked for an hour 
or more before washing in suds made 
of cold water and naphtha or curd 
soap. Do not use yellow soap or any 
form of washing compound which may 
contain free alkali. 

To Prepare Laces for the Wash. — 
First remove all stains, and if much 
soiled by perspiration wash in soap 
and cold water, rubbing the soUed 
spots gently between the fingers. Af- 
ter the stains have all been removed 
the lace may be washed in warm 
suds, and, if necessary, afterwards 
boiled. 

To Suds Laces. — Only the purest 
hard white curd soaps should be used 
for washing laces. Many persons save 
the scraps of fine castile and other 
toilet soaps, melt them with a small 
quantity of water in a double boiler, 
and make a soap jelly for use with 
these delicate fabrics. It is better to 
make soapsuds in a small kettle with 
soft water and fine soap in which to 
boil these articles than to put them 
in' the regular boiler. If they are not 
much soiled do not boil them, but 
bring the suds to a boil and pour over 
the laces, letting them soak until the 
water is cool enough to bear the 
hands. Wash as other fine goods, 
stripping between the hands as light- 
ly as possible and sousing up and 



down in the suds. Use two or more 
fresh suds if necessary. 

To Boil Laces. — Laces that are much 
soiled may be, if prepared and pro- 
tected in the above manner, boiled in 
soapsuds the same as other white 
goods. To boU laces rolled about a 
bottle, first saturate the lace with 
olive oil or sweet oil, prepare strong 
soapsuds, and stand the bottle up- 
right. Or the bottle may merely be 
dropped in vrith other articles. 

To Blnse and Dry. — Rinse laces 
thoroughly in clear water, pressing 
the water out of them with the hands 
and dry in the hot sun without re- 
moving from the cloth or bottle which 
protect them. 

Point Lace and Battenberg. — Point 
lace may be washed as other laces if 
very carefully basted to a piece of 
fine white flannel and another piece 
of flannel basted over it. Care must 
be taken to catch all the points, using 
very fine basting thread. After rins- 
ing, the flannel must be carefully 
stretched, and while still damp ironed, 
without removing the lace, until per- 
fectly dry. 

Or the professional method may be 
employed, which is as follows: stretch 




"Stretch the Ditck Out of Doors." 

the lace, face down, on a piece of 
clean white duck and carefully tack it 



WASH DAY 



213 



on, using very fine basting thread and 
taking pains to catch all the points. 
Stretch the duck tent fashion over a 
rod out of doors on a clear day. Make 
a lather of fine castile or curd soap 
and apply the soapsuds with a soft 
brush, as an old toothbrush or a nail- 
brush with soft bristles, or with a 
sponge, until it is thoroughly cleaned. 
Rinse by pouring over it water con- 
taining a little alum. Add a little 
bluing to the last rinsing water. Ap- 
ply thin starch or a solution of gum 
arable with a sponge, and when nearly 
dry lay a Turkish towel over the iron- 
ing board, put the duck on this with 
the lace underneath, and iron the 
duck. This is a perfectly safe meth- 
od and gives a polish which cannot 
be acquired in any other way. 

To Wash a White Lace Veil. — If 
not much soiled, first wash in cold 
water with castile or curd soap, squeez- 
ing between the fingers without rub- 
bing. When stains and spots have 
disappeared, squeeze gently from the 
cold water and pour over it the hot 
suds. Let stand until cool enough to 
bear the hands, and continue squeez- 
ing with the fingers until perfectly 
clean, changing the suds if necessary. 
If much soiled, put the veil in a cot- 
ton bag and boil ten or fifteen min- 
utes. Rinse in cold water with a little 
bluing, and starch vdth a thin solution 
of gum arable, rice water, or corn 
starch. Stretch to its original shape 
and spread over a linen towel stretched 
tent fashion out of doors, and in the 
bright sun if possible. Pull the edges 
out to their proper shape and fasten 
with pins. When nearly dry iron on 
a Turkish towel through a piece of 
flannel or linen cloth. 

To Wash Black lace. — Make suds 
of castile or other hard white soap 
and boiling water, and add a table- 
spoonful of oxgaU to set the color. 
Allow this to cool until it will bear 
the hand, then immerse the lace and 
cleanse by squeezing gently with the 
fingers. Rinse in two or more cold 
waters, adding salt to the first and 
bluing to the last. Starch with a thin 
solution of gum arable or common 



glue made by dissolving a piece of 
thin glue about an inch square in a 
quart of boiling water. Or use thin 
rice water or cornstarch. Lay over 
black silk or cambric stretched tent 
fashion, stretch, and pin the edges 
securely. When dry arrange face down 
on a Turkish towel, and iron through 
a thin cloth, following the pattern with 
the point of the iron. Use a warm, 
not hot, iron, as much heat will turn 
the lace rusty. 

To Sponge Black lace. — First dust 
the articles thoroughly and stretch, 
face down, over a piece of black goods, 
tacking down the edges with basting 
thread. Sponge with dilute ammonia 
and water. 

Or sponge with green tea. 

Or use borax water in the propor- 
tion of 1 teaspoonfid of borax to 1 
pint of soft water. 

Use, if convenient, an old black kid 
glove as a sponge. Press while still 
damp and without removing from the 
cloth to which it is basted. Lay the 
lace on a Turkish towel protected by 
a piece of dry black goods and iron 
through the protecting cloth on the 
wrong side, using a warm, not hot, 
iron. 

Or a long piece of lace may be 
wound about a bottle and put in a 
warm place to dry. Avoid the direct 
heat of the sun or of a hot stove or 
iron, as these tend to give black arti- 
cles a rusty appearance. 

lace Curtains — When To Launder 
Them. — Have a special day at house- 
cleaning time for lace curtains, doilies, 
dresser scarfs, and all articles of fancy 
work. These require suds made of 
fancy soap and more care in the laun- 
(>y than ordinary articles; hence they 
should be handled by themselves and 
given special treatment. After being 
done up they can be laid away until 
house cleaning is finished, and put up 
as each room is cleaned. 

To Air Lace Curtains. — ^Lace cur- 
tains may be cleaned easily and will 
not need washing so often if hung on 
the line on a clear day with a gentle 
breeze — not too windy — and dusted by 
the wind. Washing these articles is a 



214 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



delicate and difficult business, and they 
necessarily suffer more or less from 
the process. 

To Prepare Curtains for the Laun- 
dry. — Stitch a narrow piece of tape 
along the hem of net or lace curteiins 
before they go to the laundry. This 
keeps the curtain from pulling out of 
shape when ironed. Lay the curtains 
on an old sheet and brush them care- 
fully with a soft brush to remove the 
dust. Fold them separately as a table- 
cloth is folded, taking care to keep 
the edges perfectly together until the 
folds are about two feet square. Baste 
a strip of white muslin along the 
edges to keep the package in order 
and quilt slightly with basting thread. 
In this shape large curtains can be 
put into siids and cleaned with a 
pounder or otherwise. 

Or fold them carefully and insert 
in a pillowcase, running through them 
at intervals strong basting thread to 
keep them flat and prevent their 
bunching in the end of the case. 

Or they may be carefully gathered 
crosswise and tied loosely in a bunch 
by two or three cords at intervals. 
Wash like other fine white goods, first, 
if much soiled, soaking for an hour 
or more in soap and cold water, next 
rubbing gently between the hands in 
warm or hot soapsuds, and afterwards 
boiling in one or more hot suds ac- 
cording to their condition. Rinse first 
in hot water, afterwards two or three 
times in cold water, adding bluing to 
the last. Kerosene, ammonia, or tur- 
pentine may be used in the boiling 
water, but no washing powders that 
may contain free alkali. 

Or put the curtain in a large tin 
funnel with a wooden handle attached 
to it; work it through suds and rins- 
ing water in such a way that the water 
will pass through the curtain and out 
at the bottom of the funnel, removing 
the dirt by suction. This process will 
not injure the most delicate fabrics, 
no matter how long it may continue. 

Colored Curtains. — If there is any 
doubt about colors being fast, deli- 
cate-colored curtains may he. cleansed 
with gasoline. 



To Dry Curtains. — If curtains are 
dried out of doors, cover the line on 
which they are hung with one or more 
thicknesses of paper or throw over it 
a dry sheet. This will prevent the 
clothespin from marking the articles 
and keep them from being injured by 
the wind. 

Or, if the curtains are folded and 
basted together with muslin, dry them 
before taking them out of the folds. 

Or lay a blanket on the floor 
and spread the wet curtains on it, 
stretching them carefully. They wiU 
keep their place and dry without fas- 
tening. 

To Stretch Curtains. — A curtain 
stretcher is not used in most fanulies, 
and hence is something of a luxury. 
Sometimes two or three families in a 
neighborhood can combine to purchase 
one for their common use. As a sub- 
stitute lay a sheet or clean wrapping 
paper on the floor, stretch the cur- 
tains over this, and fasten by means 
of heavy pins called bank pins, which 
can be obtained at the stores. Use a. 
pin for each scallop, driving them in- 
to the floor with a tack hanuner. Lay 
other curtains over these, hooking 
them on the same pins, as is done on 
stretchers. Several curtains may be 
hooked on the same set of pins. The 
pins may be afterwards removed and 
used again. 

Or the curtains may be pinned to a 
sheet laid upon the carpet, two or 
three curtains by ^refuUy matching 
the scallops being pinned down at the 
same time. 

Or stretch a sheet on a quilting 
frame, and pin the curteiins to this. 

Or, while damp, hang the curtains, 
one at a time, on a curtain rod, and 
slip a heavy rod or curtain pole 
through the hem at the bottom. Stretch 
the curtains to their full width, and 
allow them to hang until dry. The 
weight of the rod at the bottom will 
stretch them sufficiently. 

SILKS AND SATIN 

To Launder Silks. — ^To wash silk 
drtsses and other garments, ribbons. 



WASH DAY 



215 



handkerchiefs, stockings, and the like, 
first rip apart made-up garments, 
shake, and brush thoroughly to free 
them from dust. Prepare soap jelly 
by cutting castUe or other good white 
hard soap into shavings, pour over it 
about double its own bulk of water, 
and dissolve by gentle heat. Have 
ready two or three tubs or pans and 
fill these partly full of hot water. 
Thus the washing and rinsing waters 
will cool alike and always be of ex- 
actly the same temperature. This is 
the great point to observe in washing 
all animal fibers, as silks or woolens. 

In the first receptacle dissolve 
enough soap jelly to make good suds, 
and let stand until the hands can be 
comfortably borne in the water. Wash 
each piece separately in the suds by 
sousing it up and down, raising it in 
one hand and stripping it through 
the fingers with the other. Continue 
this process until clean, but without 
creasing, wringing, or squeezing it. 
When washed clean, strip through the 
fingers to remove suds. If soiled spots 
do not come out, rub on a little soap 
jelly and immediately dip again into 
the suds. Change the suds if neces- 
sary. Rinse in clear water, following 
the same process as in washing, strip 
out the water between the fingers, or 
shake out the pieces without wring- 
ing, and iron at once without hanging 
up to dry. 

Or mix 6 ounces of strained honey 
with 4 ounces of soft-soap jelly made 
of castUe or other hard white soap, 
and add 1 pint of whisky. Rip apart 
made-up articles, spread the pieces 
flat on a smooth surface, and apply 
this mixture with a brush, rubbing 
lightly with the grain of the silk. 
Rinse in two or three clear waters, 
not too hot to bear the hands com- 
fortably, and without wringing, creas- 
ing, or folding the silk. Add a little 
sugar or a tablespoonful of honey to 
the last rinsing water. Iron at once. 

Or for delicate fabrics, as China 
silk, pongee, and similar dress goods, 
for each article, as a waist or sum- 
mer gown, put IJ pints of bran in a 
bag of white muslin, and pour over it 



sufficient boiling water to wash the 
garment. When the hands can be 
borne in it comfortably, squeeze the 
bag in the water to extract the solu- 
tion of bran. Add 1 or 3 teaspoon- 
fuls of powdered borax, wash, rinse 
in clear water, and iron at once. Use 
no starch, as the bran gives sufficient 
stiffness. 

To Wash Colored Silks. — The same 
cautions must be observed in washing 
colored silks as in the case of other 
colored goods, with the additional cau- 
tion that they must not be crushed, 
squeezed, or wrung when wet, or 
wrinkles may be formed which will 
not iron out. Prepare suds for silk 
by dissolving hard white soap in boil- 
ing water, and add oxgall or alum to 
set the colors. Allow the suds to cool 
until they will bear the hands, and 
immerse the silk in them. Lay the 
washboard across the tub, spread an 
old towel or piece of flannel over it, 
lay the silk flat on this, and apply the 
suds by rubbing gently with a soft 
cloth or a sponge, or a toothbrush or 
nailbrush having medium hard bris- 
tles. When the silk is clean apply 
cold water with the brush and after- 
wards souse in cold water containing 
salt. If the silk is of solid color, dis- 
solve a little dye the color of the silk 
in the rinsing water. If the color has 
faded this will restore it. Silk gar- 
ments rinsed in diluted dye water will 
come out nearly as fresh as new. 

To Wash White Silk. — Prepare suds 
as for other delicate white goods by 
using hard white soap, but no soda 
or washing compounds containing free 
alkali. Cleanse the silks by applying 
the soapsuds with a soft cloth or 
brush, rinse in cold water, partially 
dry in the sun, and while still damp 
iron between two cloths on the wrong 
side. 

To Wash Satin. — Satins may be 
washed in the same manner as silks, 
or sponge the way of the grain with 
a, weak solution of borax. 

To Wash Silk Stockings. — Prepare 
a lather and wash as other silk goods. 
For white stockings add a little blu- 
ing to the last rinsing water. For 



216 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



other tints add a little dye of the re- 
quired color. Stretch the stockings 
to their proper shape, and pin or 
baste them between two thicknesses of 
a clean linen towel. Stretch this tent 
fashion, and the stockings will dry in 
their natural shape without ironing. 
Or wash in bran water. 

WOOLENS, WOBSTEDS, AND FLAN- 
NELS 

To Wash Woolen Goods and Flan- 
nels. — Washing woolen goods and 
flannels without shrinking them or 
causing them to lose their natural 
softness and delicate colors is one of 
the best tests of the skillful lauin- 
dress. 

Cautions for Woolen Goods. — ^Wool- 
en and flannel goods must not be 
soaked, boiled, scalded, or wrung out 
by twisting. They must not be dried 
near a hot fire. The fibers of wool 
are hooked and curled, and when they 
are crushed together by rubbing they 
form knots, which thicken the fiber 
and shrink it in both dimensions. This 
is one of the principal causes of the 
shrinking that is so much feared. Or 
the expansion and contraction caused 
by alternate heat and cold may cause 
the fibers to interlace. Flannels may 
be shrunk, if desired, before they are 
made up by first placing them in cold 
and afterwards in hot water. But 
they can be washed without shrinking 
if proper precautions are observed. 

To Suds Woolens and Flannels. — 
Prepare suds by dissolving 1 bar of 
hard white soap shaved fine in a boil- 
erful of water and adding 3 table- 
spoonfuls of aqua ammonia. Do not 
use yellow soap which contains borax 
or soda in any form, or washing fluids 
and powders of the composition of 
which you know nothing. Pour the 
suds into a tub and allow them to be- 
come cool enough to bear the hands 
comfortably before putting in the 
flannels. Wash these articles one at 
a time as quickly as possible. Do not 
rub soap on them or rub them on the 
washboard. Souse them up and down 
in the water and rub them together 



with the hands until cleaned. Do not 
put them through the wringer or 
wring by twisting, but squeeze out 
the soapsuds with the hands, shake 
out carefully, stretch, and wash in a 
second lather prepared like the first, 
but not so strong. Rinse in warm 
water as near the temperature of the 
suds as possible, to which a little 
bluing may be added, press out the 
rinsing water, shake vigorously, and 
stretch the articles to prevent shrink- 
ing. 

Pull each piece as nearly as possi- 
ble into its proper shape and hang 
up carefully in such a way that the 
shape may be preserved. A clear, 
bright day with sunshine and a light 
breeze is desirable. Flannels should 
be taken down while still slightly 
damp and roUed up in a dry cloth. 
If the weather is not clear they may 
be dried indoors, but not near the 
stove. The object should be to avoid 
extreme changes of temperature, as 
these cause flannels to shrink and be- 
come hard. 

To Wash Colored Woolens and 
Flannels. — ^Wash colored woolens and 
flannels same as other colored goods, 
adding oxgall or alum to the suds to 
set the colors, and salt or vinegar, or 
both, to the rinsing water. Omit the 
use of ammonia or borax. Dry deli- 
cate colored flannels in the shade. 

To Wash Colored Woolen Dress 
Goods. — Cashmere, merino, alpaca, 
and llama dresses and colored worst- 
ed and flannel waists and blouses may 
be washed in suds prepared as for 
other colored woolen goods, provid- 
ed the same cautions are observed. 
Do not soak, boil, or scald any woolen 
goods. Do not use any form of soda, 
lye, or unknown washing fluids or pow- 
ders. Do not use borax or ammonia for 
delicate colored articles. Use pure 
neutral white or yellow soap shaved 
and dissolved in boiling water until 
it will bear the hands comfortably, 
and keep the suds and rinsing water 
at the same lukewarm temperature. 
Rub and wring as lightly as possible, 
rather sousing the garments up and 
down and squeezing out the water 



WASH DAY 



217 



with the hands. Add oxgall or alum 
to the suds, and salt or vinegar to 
the rinsing water to set the colors. 
Dry delicate colors in the shade. 
Avoid direct sunlight or proximity to 
a hot fire. Take down before dry and 
iron while damp, but without sprin- 
kling. 

Soap Jelly for Woolen Goods. — To 
avoid preparing suds by shaving soap 
and boiling each time, it is convenient 
to prepare in advance a soap jelly, as 
follows: shave any amount of neutral 
white or yellow soap in the propor- 
tion of i pound of soap to 1 quart of 
boiling water and simmer until dis- 
solved. When cold it will jell. Use 
this jelly in the proportion of 1 heap- 
ing tablespoonful to J gallon of warm 
water to prepare suds for washing all 
flannel or woolen goods. This saves 
the time required to bring the water 
to a boil. 

To Wash Colored flannel and 
Woolen Goods — Other Kethods. — In 
addition to soapsuds, flannel and wool- 
en goods may be washed in bran, flour 
starch, or rice. To use flour starch, 
take a teacupful of flour and rub it 
smooth with a little water to form a 
fine paste. Add boiling water slowly, 
stirring vigorously to make a smooth 
starch. Boil five or ten minutes and 
strain through cheese cloth into half 
a tubful of warm water, stirring vig- 
orously. This will make good suds 
without soap. 

To Wash Dress Goods with Rice. — 
Boil 3 pounds of rice in 13 quarts 
of water for 2 or 3 hours. Pour half 
of this into a tub, and when cool 
enough to bear the hands put the 
garments in and wash them with the 
soft boiled rice the same as with soap. 
Strain the other half through cheese 
cloth. Put the solid part into an- 
other tub of warm water and wash 
the garments once in this. Rinse in 
clear warm water, and a second time 
in warm water in which the clear rice 
water that was reserved for this pur- 
pose has been added. This will take 
the place of starch. No soap or 
starch need be used. The rice should 
be boiled a day or two in advance and 



kept in readiness, so that garments 
may be washed early in the morning 
and done up the same day. 

Woolen Taney Work — Crochet, etc. 
— Small and delicate woolen articles 
may be put into a cotton bag or tied 
up in a pillowcase and washed the 
same as other woolen articles. The 
suds and rinsing water should be plen- 
tiful. The articles need not be taken 
out of the bag while washing, and 
they may be hung up in it on the line 
to dry. 

Woolen Tahle Covers. — First re- 
move all stains and grease spots; next 
soak thirty minutes in strong salt 
water. Prepare suds, wash, rinse, and 
dry same as other colored woolen 
goods. If much soiled, apply soap and 
water with a. scrubbing brush, laying 
the cloth on the washboard placed 
crosswise upon the tub. 

To Wash Knitted Shawls. — Knitted 
or crocheted shawls may be folded as 
flat as possible and laid carefully in 
a pillowcase, run through at inter- 
vals with basting thread to keep flat, 
and treated like other flannel or wool- 
en goods. If washed separately, ob- 
serve the usual cautions for woolen 
goods, gently squeezing through the 
hands and keeping the suds and rins- 
ing water of the same lukewarm tem- 
perature. Do not hang knitted goods 
up to dry, but put in the oven on a 
big platter, shaking and turning oc- 
casionally, or lay on a clean cloth in 
the bright sunshine. 

Woolen Shawls. — The most delicate 
colored cashmere and other woolen 
shawls may be washed in soapsuds if 
proper precautions are observed. Make 
suds same as for other woolen goods 
by dissolving 1 pound of hard white 
soap in 3J pailfuls of water. Add 1 
tablespoonful of oxgall or 2 ounces 
of alum and wash the articles by sous- 
ing up and down, rubbing as little as 
possible. Squeeze the water out of 
them and rinse in two or three waters, 
each containing a teaspoonftil of salt. 
Place between two dry sheets to wring 
out and wring lightly. Press while 
still damp with a warm, not hot, 
iron. 



218 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



To Wash Blankets. — Choose a warm, 
sunny day with a gentle breeze. Pre- 
pare suds by dissolving in hot water 
i bar of any good white hard soap, 1 
tablespoonful of borax, and 1 table- 
spoonful of aqua ammonia for each 
pair of blankets. Let the suds cool 
until they will bear the hands. Im- 
merse the blankets and let them stand 
in the suds for an hour, keeping the 
temperature about as hot as the hands 
wiU bear by frequently adding hot 
water. Do not rub soap on the blan- 
kets nor scour nor rub them. Lay the 




"Lay the Washboard Across the Tub." 

washboard flat across the tub, put in 
one blanket at a time, raise the blan- 
ket on to the washboard and go around 
the edge, applying the suds with a 
scrubbing brush and rubbing vigor- 
ously. Meantime heat sufficient water 
for two more lathers. Remove from 
the first to a second suds prepared in 
the same manner, seize the blanket by 
the middle and souse it up and down. 
Squeeze and press it between the hands 
until clean. Rinse in three clear 
waters, keeping them at the same tem- 
perature as the suds, namely, as hot 
as the hands will bear, and run through 
the wringer or squeeze the water out 
of them rather than wring them in 
the usual way. Fasten by the edges 
to the line and frequently shake and 
stretch them to their proper size while 
drying. To have the best success in 
washing blankets two points must be 
observed, namely: to keep the water 



at a uniform temperature, neither boil- 
ing hot nor cold enough to chill, but 
as hot as the hands will bear; and not 
to wring or rub the blankets in such 
a way that the fibers will become in- 
terlaced and cause shrinking. When 
thoroughly dry beat the blankets 
while on the line with a carpet beater. 
This wiU cause the wool to become 
fluffy like a new blanket. 

To Wash. Bedspreads. — If bed- 
spreads are changed quite frequently 
they will not require soaking, but if 
very much soiled they may be soaked 
by putting them in a tub and pour- 
ing over them a boilerf ul of hot water 
in which 3 tablespoonfuls of borax 
has been dissolved. Prepare suds by 
dissolving 1 bar of hard white or 
yellow soap in a boilerful of hot 
water and wash same as other white 
goods. Do not use, any form of soda, 
lye, or any washing fluids or com- 
pounds. If washed on a windy day, 
bedspreads will need no ironing. 
Fold the edges together and pin them 
on the line with the wrong side out. 
This not only prevents the spread 
from wearing across the middle, but 
gives it a fresher appearance than 
ironing. 

To Wash Comforters. — Sometimes 
a heavy comforter can be washed by 
simply tacking it smoothly on a clean 
shingle roof and letting the rain fall 
on it. It is well to previously soak it 
for half an hour or more in a strong 
solution of common salt to prevent 
the colors running. 

Or soak the comforter for an hour 
or two in borax water. Prepare suds 
as for other colored goods, with the 
addition of oxgall or alum and salt. 
Lay the washboard across the top of 
the tub and apply the suds with a 
soft scrubbing brush, especially round 
the edges. Continue as in washing 
blankets. Those who have a supply 
of running water may use the garden 
hose for rinsing blankets, bedspreads, 
and comforters. Remove from the 
suds without wringing, hang them on 
a line, and drench them with water 
from the hose until they are rinsed 
thoroughly. 



WASH DAY 



^19i 



BBYING CLOTHES 

Bag for Clothespins. — The ordi- 
nary wooden clothespins are the best. 
Keep clothespins for convenience in a 
bag made like a laundry bag of crash, 
linen, or other washable material, or 
use for this purpose a 24-pound flour 
sack. A wire hoop at the top of the 
clothespin bag is a convenience in 
keeping it open when clothespins are 
wanted. 

To Preserve Clothespins. — Put the 
clothespin bag into a kettle of boiling 
water every few weeks. Remove after 
three to five minutes and spread the 
clothespins out to dry in the sun, or 
dry quickly near the flre. This keeps 
them from becoming brittle and crack- 
ing. 

Dip the heads of part of the clothes- 
pins in dark paint, part in light paint, 
and leave the rest unpainted. Use 
the ones with dark heads for colored 
garments, those with light heads for 
miscellaneous pieces, as flannels, tow- 
els, and the like, and the unpainted 
ones for sheer white garments. Tills 
will prevent using on sheer white 
pieces pins that have been stained by 
colored garments. 

To Have Clothespins Handy. — ^Make 
an apron with a large baglike pocket 
to contain clothespins, to wear whUe 
hanging out the clothes. 

Or put clothespins into a small bas- 
ket (an ordinary grape basket is con- 
venient), and hang the basket on the 
clothesline by a hook made of wire, 
such as is used to hold the basket by 
apple and berry pickers. Push the 
basket along as you hang the clothes. 
It is handy, and is also out of the 
way. 

Or hang on each clothes post a bag 
made of oilcloth with a lapel. Attach 
a sufficient number of pins to the 
clothesline by pieces of strong cord 
about a foot long. Fish line is ex- 
cellent for this purpose. Make a loop 
of the cord over the clothesline large 
enough to admit of it slipping along, 
and fasten the pins securely at the 
other end. After the clothes are taken 
down, the clothespins will remain sus- 



pended from the line by the cords. 
Now shove them all along the line 
to the post, drop them into the bag 
without untying them, cover with 
the lapel, and leave them there for 
future use. But this plan necessi- 
tates leaving the clothesline out of 
doors. 

Or set the clothes basket and 
clothespin bag on a child's four- 
wheeled cart, or even a wheelbarrow, 
and push them along under the line 
as you proceed. 

To Keep the Hands Warm. — Set the 
clothespin bag in a. kettle of boiling 
water. Remove and dry near the 
stove. The hot clothespins will help 
to keep the hands warm in freezing 
weather. 

To Select and Preserve Clotheslines. 
— Gutta-percha clotheslines are much 
more satisfactory than rope. They can 
be left out of doors in all weathers, 
and wiped clean with a damp cloth. 
But clotheslines of rope will last lon- 
ger and keep in better order if they 
are boiled in water for a couple of 
hours when first purchased, and af- 
terwards dipped in boiling water once 
a month. 

They must be thoroughly dried by 
hanging them near the fire or stretch- 
ing them on the clothes posts in the 
sunshine. Care must be taken not to 
allow them to kink. 

To Wash Clotheslines. — A soiled 
line may be cleansed and made to 
look like new by boiling it in strong 
soapsuds. For this purpose make suds 
of a neutral white or yellow soap, but 
do not use soda in any form or wash- 
ing powders containing free alkali. 
The line is so thick that the alkali 
may not all be rinsed out of it and 
hence will be likely to rot the fiber. 
Wind the line into a coil around the 
elbow, tie it securely at both ends, and 
. put it in the boiling suds. If it is 
much soiled, change the water. Pour 
the last suds into the tub, place the 
coil of line on the washboard, and ap- 
ply the suds with a scrubbing brush, 
scrubbing downward. Dry by stretch- 
ing between clothes posts in the sun- 
shine or indoors by the ftre. Take 



220 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



care that the line is thoroughly dry- 
before it is put away. 

To Avoid Kinks in Clotheslines. — 
To prevent a clothesline from becom- 
ing kinked or twisted when taken 
down, wind it toward you instead of 
from you. This tends to remove the 
kinkiness. 

Care of Clotheslines. — Do not put 
out a clothesline until the clothes are 
ready tp be hung out. When they are 
dry take the line down at once, coil 
it carefully over the elbows to avoid 
kinks, knot the coil at one end, and 
slip it into a clean cotton bag with a 
draw string at one end to keep it free 
from dust and dirt. Hang the bag 
in a clean, dry place. 

To Hang Out Clothes. — ^The orderly 
arrangement made by sorting the 
clothes in the first instance should be 
observed in hanging them on the line. 
Hang the contents of the first boiler 
in one row, those of the second boiler 
in another, sheets together, towels to- 
gether, napkins together, and so on. 
Expose plain white goods and coarser 
articles to the sun, but hang colored 
goods and delicate woolen and flannel 
goods in the shade. Hang up the 
clothes, especially colored articles, as 
quickly as possible after they are re- 
moved from the rinsing water. If 
small or delicate articles, as laces, 
crocheted articles, and the like, are 
boiled in a cotton bag or pillowcase, 
hang them up in this receptacle to 
dry. Take down woolens and flan- 
nels, including blankets, before they 
are quite dry. While drying, stretch 
them occasionally as nearly as possi- 
ble to their proper shape. 

To Hang Out large Pieces. — Fold 
large pieces, as tablecloths, sheets, 
blankets, counterpanes, quilts, and the 
like, and pin the opposite edges to the 
line rather than by the middle. The 
articles will thus be less injured by 
whipping and present a better appear- 
ance. Figured counterpanes hung in 
this way will require no ironing, and 
if on account of sickness or otherwise 
it is necessary to save labor, sheets 
and even tablecloths may be used 
rough dry. 



To Take Down Clothes. — When 
taking clothes from the line place 
the clothes basket in a chUd's cart or 
wheelbarrow. Lay a large clean cloth 
in the bottom, shake the wrinkles 
from each article, fold it carefully, 




"Place the Basket in a Child's Cart." 



and lay all in orderly fashion in the 
basket. Put the corners of the sheets, 
tablecloths, towels, and other similar 
articles exactly together, and it will 
be found much easier to iron them 
than if they were thrown into a clothes 
basket in a disorderly mass. 

To Prevent Preezing. — ^The excess 
of soap and washing powders con- 
taining alkali which may be left in 
fabrics by careless rinsing wiU in time 
give white articles a dingy or yellow 
color. This is very much intensified 
by freezing. Colored articles will al- 
ways be more or less faded by freez- 
ing, and all garments are injured 
more by one freezing than by several 
weeks of constant use. To prevent 
freezing add salt to the rinsing water. 
This makes tKe clothes less liable to 
freeze. 

If the corners especially of towels, 
napkins, etc., and the edges of sheets 
and tablecloths be dipped in rather 
strong salt water they wUl not freeze 
so tightly, and there will be less dan- 
ger of their tearing when whipped by 
the wind or when being removed from 
the line. 

Bad Weather. — If wash day is 
stormy the clothes may be thoroughly 



WASH DAY 



221 



wrung dry, rolled up, and laid away 
in covered tubs or baskets for a, rea- 
sonable time while waiting for fair 
weather. This plan is better than to 
keep them soaking in a tub of water. 

If the clothes are on the line and it 
Is necessary, on account of bad weath- 
er, to take them down before they are 
dry, it is a good plan to put the 
clotheshorse in the yard, fold the 
pieces, and lay them over it, rather 
than to crowd the wet clothes into 
the basket. They can then be car- 
ried on the clotheshorse indoors and 
placed by the fire. 

Or clothes may be dried indoors by 
special drying arrangement in the 
kitchen or other warm, convenient 
room. Place hooks or small pulleys on 
either side of a room opposite one 
another, about SJ feet apart and at 
a height a few inches above the head 
of the tallest member of the family. 
Stretch the clothesline on these so that 
it will go back and forth across the 
room. Instead of allowing the clothes 
to hang down on the line, stretch 
them across horizontally, up and out 
of the way. Put the heaviest articles 



nearest the stove, and keep a good 
fire. Open the windows a few inches 
at the top for ventilation. An entire 
wash for a family of half a dozen 
persons can be thus dried without 
serious inconvenience in an ordinary 
kitchen. If there is a special room 
set apart for the laundry, this method 
will be found equally convenient. 

To Dry Knit Goods. — Children's 
knitted underwear, woolen shirts, and 
other small but expensive articles 
which tend to shrink when drying, may 
be kept in shape by drying on frames. 
These may be purchased or can be 
readily made by any ingenious mem- 
ber of the family. They sho^ild be 
about an inch wider than the gar- 
ment, made in two parts hinged to- 
gether, and each having an arm piece 
with a blunt point projecting at the 
side. Shut the stretcher by means of 
the hinges, slip it into the garment 
while wet, insert the arm pieces, 
stretch it out flat, button the garment, 
and hang it up to dry. This not only 
preserves the shape and prevents 
shrinking, but gives the article the 
appearance of being new. 



CHAPTER VII 

IRONING DAY 

BLUING AND SPRINKLING— STARCH AND STARCfflNG— CARE OF 
IRONING UTENSILS— IRONING— TO DO UP SILKS, RIBBONS. 
AND WOOLENS— TO DO UP LACES AND CURTAINS— TO MARK 
AND STORE LINEN 



BLUIITG AND SFBmSLIirG 

Bluing. — It is very difficult to rinse 
clothes quite free from all traces of 
soap or other washing compounds. 
The minute quantities of alkali left 
in the fabrics tend to give white arti- 
cles a dingy or yellow tinge. The ob- 
ject of bluing is to correct this. Hence 
it is customary to add bluing to the 
last rinsing water for white articles 
or colored goods that have a white 
background. For dark colored goods 
it is also customary to add a liberal 
supply of bluing to the starch. Some 
laundresses do not wring from the 
bluing water table linens and simi- 
lar articles which they desire to have 
a fine, clear white, but hang them up 
dripping in order to deepen their 
luster. 

To Make Bluing. — In addition to 
the various kinds of commercial blu- 
ing upon the market, the following 
recipes are recommended: 

Dissolve 1 ounce of the best soluble 
Prussian blue powder and 4 ounce of 
powdered oxalic acid in 1 quart of 
soft water. 

Or dissolve 1 package of blue dia- 
mond dye for cotton in 1 quart of 
soft water. To prevent lumps, pre- 
pare this as you would starch. Rub 
the dry powder into a paste with a 
little water, add a little more cold 
water, then add the rest of the water 
boiling hot. Cool and bottle for use. 

Sprinkling. — The object of sprin- 
kling is to give the garments a uniform 
dampness, to soften wrinkles, and to 



prevent the iron from scorching. 
Hence the clothes should be sprinkled 
slightly and afterwards rolled up and 
allowed to lie until the moisture has 
uniformly penetrated all parts of the 
fabric. Delicate colored goods, flan- 
nels and other woolens, and fine linens 
will have a better appearance if ironed 
on the same day that they were washed 
than if allowed to become entirely dry 
before ironing. Colored goods es- 
pecially should not be sprinkled if it 
can be avoided. 

Utensils for Sprinkling. — An ordi- 
nary brush broom, a chUd's sprinkling 




"An Ordinary Brush Bromn." 

can, a tin baking-powder can or glass 
fruit jar with metal top perforated 
by holes made with a hammer and 



232 



IRONING DAY 



small nails, are all convenient utensils 
for sprinkling. A small fine-grain 
sponge and a basin of water should 
be at hand when ironing. If small 
spots of sheer goods become dry they 
should be dampened before ironing, 
or if a smudge or patch of starch ap- 
pears it can be thus removed without 
affecting the rest of the garment. 

STARCH AND STABGHING 

To Hake Starch. — Starch is a sub- 
stance contained in various vegetables, 
as grains, potatoes, etc. 

Starch is made from grain by steep- 
ing it in cold water until it becomes 
soft. It is then placed in sacks and 
pressed in a vat with water. The 
milky juice which is produced by this 
process is allowed to stand until it 
becomes clear, when the starch sinks 
to the bottom in the form of a white 
powder. 

Starch may be made from potatoes 
by grating them in water and strain- 
ing and squeezing the mass through 
thin cloth, as cheese cloth, or a suit- 
able sieve. The liquid is then allowed 
to stand until the potato starch set- 
tles at the bottom. The clear liquid 
from wWch the starch has settled has 
considerable cleansing properties and 
is especially useful to clean colored 
silks, woolens, and other delicate ar- 
ticles without injury to their color 
or texture. The coarse fiber of the 
potato removed by straining may be 
used in washing heavy colored wool- 
en articles, as blankets, horse blankets, 
carriage robes, and the like. These 
articles should be soaked in water 
containing salt to set the colors, and 
afterwards scrubbed with the grated 
potato fibers and scrubbing brush and 
water. 

Starch may be made from potatoes 
which are too small for domestic use, 
and a fairly good quality may also 
be made from frosted potatoes, al- 
though this last may have a slightly 
darker color. The starch from frosted 
potatoes may be improved by adding 
fresh water 'l after the first clear liquid 
has been turned off, stirring, and al- 



lowing it to settle once more, and so 
continuing imtil the liquid is entirely 
clear. 

To Prepare Starch. — The amount of 
starch to prepare for a given wash- 
ing depends upon the articles to be 
starched, and must be determined in 
each family by experiment. The abil- 
ity to do up starched linen perfectly 
is one of the most severe tests of the 
successful laundress. Hence the im- 
portance of knowing how to prepare 
good starch. First mix the required 
amount of common starch with a small 
quantity of cold water to the con- 
sistency of cream. Carefully rub and 
beat the starch with a spoon to break 
up all lumps and insure that the 
particles of starch are evenly wet 
through. Thin to the consistency of 
milk with a little more cold water. 
For thick cooked starch add 8 parts 
of boiling water to 1 of starch. For 
thin cooked starch add 16 parts of 
water to 1 of starch. Pour the water 
while boiling vigorously in a thin 
stream, and stir constantly to pre- 
vent the starch from lumping. Set 
the starch over the fire and continue 
to boil it from 3 to 5 minutes, stirring 
vigorously all the time. If such sub- 
stances as wax, borax, oil, etc., are 
used, they should be mixed with the 
starch while cooking. Bluing should 
not be added until the starch is cold. 
Raw starch or that which has been 
insufSciently cooked will stick to the 
iron and make much trouble for the 
laundress. Cooked starch may be 
thinned by the addition of cold water. 

Cornstarch. — Common cornstarch, 
such as is used for making puddings, 
is preferred by some laundresses in- 
stead of the ordinary laundry starch. 
It is about as cheap and in the 
opinion of many gives a finer gloss 
and more finished appearance to deli- 
cate starched articles. Try this some 
time when the laundry starch is 
out and see how you like it. A mix- 
ture of the two kinds is also much 
favored. 

Starch with Wax. — For white cuffs, 
collars, and shirt bosoms melt with 
gentle heat white wax or a mixture 



224 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



of equal parts of white wax and sper- 
maceti or a mixture of 1 part of white 
wax to 2 parts of spermaceti, as pre- 
ferred, and stir into ordinary starch 
while boiling. Use a lump of wax 
about the size of a walnut to a quart 
of cooked starch, or estimate the 
amount of wax in the proportion of 
l^g^ to J of the bulk of dry starch re- 
quired for the garments. 

Starch with Borax. — ^Add 1 table- 
spoonful of borax to each pint of 
cooked starch while boiling. This 
makes the starch go farther by lessen- 
ing the amount that adheres to each 
garment. It increases the gloss with- 
out giving additional stiffness and 
tends to prevent the irons from stick- 
ing. 

Or add 1 teaspoonful of borax to 1 
pint of uncooked starch for garments 
requiring stiffness. 

Or mix 1 teaspoonful of borax and 
2 tablespoonfuls of dry starch. Rub 
carefully in a small quantity of cold 
water and add enough to make IJ 
cupfuls. 

Starch with Salt. — Add 1 teaspoon- 
ful of table salt to 1 pint of cooked 
or uncooked starch. This prevents the 
starch from being whipped out oi the 
garments by the wind when drying, 
and also from freezing in severely cold 
weather. 

Or add 1 teaspoonful of Epsom 
salts to each bowl of cooked starch 
while boiling. This will add stiff'ness 
and tend to prevent the articles from 
being scorched by hot irons. 

Starch with Soap. — Make the boil- 
ing water in which starch is cooked 
slightly soapy with pure castile or 
other neutral white soap. This will 
assist in producing a gloss and will 
also prevent the irons from sticking. 

Starch with Gum Arabic. — Prepare 
a solution of gum arable by putting 
about 2 oimces of the white gum fine- 
ly powdered in a glass bottle or quart 
fruit jar and pouring over it 1 pint 
of boiling water. Cork tightly and 
shake until the powder is dissolved. 
After 24 hours strain through cheese 
cloth and preserve the clear gum wa- 
ter for use. Add 1 tablespoonful to 



each pint of cooked starch while boil- 
ing. This is especially useful for fine 
dress goods, either white or colored, 
as lawns, muslins, calicoes, and the 
like, giving them much of the body 
and appearance of new material. Less 
of the gum water may be used for the 
finished materials, as muslins, and 
more may be added for cuffs, collars, 
and shirt cuffs to increase the stiff- 
ness and impart a gloss. 

Starch with Sugar. — Add a tea- 
spoonful of granulated sugar to each 
pint of starch while boiling. This as- 
sists in giving the so-called domestic 
finish. 

Starch with Stearin. — Add a tea- 
spoonful of stearin to each pint of 
starch when boiling. This substance 
with the addition of bluing is sold 
under the name of " starch luster " at 
a much higher price than the stearin 
itself costs, and is no better. 

Starch with Lard. — Add half a tea- 
spoonful of lard or butter to each 
quart of cooked starch when boiling. 
This helps to give the soft or domes- 
tic finish, and prevents the irons from 
sticking. 

Additions to Starch. — Among the 
various substances added to starch for 
different purposes are wax, borax, salt, 
soap, lard, sugar, gum arable, glue, 
stearin, and glycerin. Borax makes 
the starch more fluid, so that it goes 
farther, and eilso increases the gloss. 
Salt prevents the starch from freezing 
in garments; wax and gum arable and 
stearin increase the gloss and give 
additional stiffness, and soap and 
sugar improve the gloss. These sub- 
stances may also be mixed together 
according to various special recipes. 

Special Becipes for Starch. — Melt 
together with gentle heat white wax, 
3 ounces; spermaceti, 3 ounces; borax, 
J pound; gum tragacanth, IJ ounces. 
Add 1 teaspoonful of the mixture to 
1 pint of cooked starch while boU- 
ing. 

Or, to prevent irons from sticking, 
rub J teaspoonful of lard and 1 tea- 
spoonful of salt into the dry starch, 
and proceed as with ordinary cooked 
starch. 



lEONING DAY 



Or mix 1 teaspoonful of white soap 
run through a grater with 1 pint of 
starch while boiling. 

Or mdt with gentle heat 1 ounce 
of isinglass, 1 ounce of borax, 1 tea- 
spoonful of white glue, and 2 tea- 
spoonfuls of white of egg. Stir into 
2 quarts of cooked starch while boil- 
ing. This will give shirt bosoms a 
high polish. 

Starch with Soda. — Add J teaspoon- 
ful of baking soda to 1 pint of cooked 
starch when boiling. This prevents the 
starch from whipping out of garments 
on the line, and also assists in giving 
finer finish. 

To Apply Starch. — Strain the hot 
starch through a piece of cheese cloth 
and use while it is still warm. Select 
first the articles that require the most 
stiffness, as shirt bosoms, collars, and 
cuffs. A portion of the starch of 
course adheres to each, so that it be- 
comes thinner by using. Starched 
clothes such as skirts, etc., should 
never be stiff enough to rattle. The 
garments to be starched should be 
nearly dry. Immerse them or such 
part of them as should be starched in 
the thick starch, and rub between the 
hands to work the starch thoroughly 
into their texture. Remove from the 
starch, squeeze out the excess, and rub 
once more with the hands to distribute 
the starch evenly through the mate- 
rial. If this is not done the surface 
will not iron smoothly. Dry the arti- 
cles, sprinkle them, spread them on a 
clean white cloth, and roll them up 
in bundles so that the dampness will 
be evenly distributed before ironing. 

To Starch Colored Clothes. — Divide 
the starch, set apart the required 
amount for colored clothes, and add 
bluing sufficient to make the starch 
quite blue. Use a liberal supply of 
bluing for blacks and dark colors, but 
not so much for light garments, es- 
pecially pink. This will prevent white 
patches of starch from appearing on 
dark garments. 

Or dip black or colored goods, as 
lawns and calicoes, in sweet or sour 
milk and use no starch. Milk alone 
will give the desired stiffness. 



Or, for delicate colored goods, use 
a simple solution of giun arable in- 
stead of starch. 

Or rinse in dilute bran water or rice 
water instead of starch. 

To Starch White Dress Goods. — 
Thin white dress goods, as white 
waists and summer gowns, may be 
starched with cold raw starch. Dry 
without starching. Dissolve a heap- 
ing tablespoonful of starch in suf- 
ficient water to immerse the garment, 
dip it into the starch until saturated, 
rinse in cold water, wring out, roll up 
in a dry cloth, and iron half an hour 
later. 

Or dry the garments, dip a clean 
muslin cloth into raw starch, and lay 
over them long enough to dampen 
them. After a few minutes press 
them with a hot iron. 

For delicate lawns and similar fab- 
rics use a solution of gum arable di- 
luted to give the stiffness required. 

C&SE OF IBONIXG TTTHITSIIS 

Ironing TTtensils. — Various im- 
proved implements and machines have 




"An Ironing Machine for Domestic Use." 

been perfected for ironing, but the 
old-fashioned flatiron heated on the 



£S6 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



range is still a well-nigh universal 
favorite. Mangles, or large heated 
cylinders revolving under pressure for 
ironing gaiments, have been in general 
use in laundries for many years, to- 
gether with polishing machines and 
similar appliances. But until quite 
recently there has not been upon the 
market a satisfactory ironing machine 
suitable for domestic use. Such ma- 
chines can now be obtained, and they 
are to be recommended for large fam- 
ilies who can afford them. 

The denatured alcohol flatiron is 
a cheap, practical, and serviceable, 
device. 

The electric flatiron is an ideal 
utensil in homes that are supplied 
with electricity. 

The patented flatiron which has a 
removable wooden handle is a great 
improvement over the old-fashioned 
solid iron which requires the use of 
cloth or asbestos holders. 

The asbestos flatiron is an imple- 
ment that is especially recommended. 

To do fine ironing it is necessary to 
have several kinds of irons. For shirt 
bosoms, collars, and cuffs a ribbed or 
other polishing iron is necessary. Ruf- 
fles will be improved by the use of a 
fluting iron. The puff iron for fine 
tucks, puffy sleeves, and other elabo- 
rate work is especially useful. This 
iron is attached to a standard and the 
cloth is passed through it. It may be 
heated at the ordinary range. 

Some persons are satisfied with the 
cold mangle, especially for table lin- 
ens, linen sheets, and other linen pieces, 
on the theory that heat has a ten- 
dency to deteriorate the linen and 
also to give it a yeUow tinge, but 
ironing by means of hot irons is stai 
the custom. 

A toy flatiron such as is sold for 
children is not only useful in the hands 
of a child for ironing dolls' clothes as 
a lesson in domestic economy, but is 
also very convenient to the laundress 
for tucks, fluting, and other difficult 
parts of dresses and similar garments. 
Such an iron may be packed in a, 
trunk and taken on vacation trips. 
It will be found most useful in hotels. 



where it can be heated over the gas or 
by means of a small alcohol lamp, and 
used for doing up handkerchiefs, laces, 
ribbons, and other small articles, both 




" a. Device for Heating Flatirons. b. Holder, 
c. Emery-cloth Board, d. Wax. e. Stand." 

as a measure of economy and also to 
prevent their being deteriorated by 
careless treatment in the laundry. 

To Prevent Rust on Irons. — If irons 
are exposed to moisture or stored 
away for a time, brush or rub them 
when warm with a mixture of vaseline 
and sweet oil. Lard or vaseline alone 
may be used for this purpose. These 
substances may be removed by wash- 
ing the iron in good soapsuds when 
ready for use. 

To Keep Flatirons Clean. — In small 
apartments it is often convenient to 
store the flatirons on the back of the 
range. To keep them free from grease 
and dirt take a conunon pasteboard 
shoe box or other box of convenient 
shape and size, and cover with sheet 
asbestos glued on. Keep the irons in 
this, and they will be clean, dry, and 
always handy. 

Care of Irons. — Care must be taken 
to prevent the roughening of irons 
from starch or other sticky substance 
adhering to them' and burning on. 
This is especially likely to happen if 
raw or partiy cooked starch is used. 
To prevent this, tack a piece of very 
fine sandpaper on the ironing board 
and rub the iron on it each time be- 
fore returning to the fire. 

Or use bath brick, dry salt, or pow- 
dered pumice stone spread on a 
smooth surface, with or without sand- 
paper. 

Or fill a cheese-cloth bag with pow- 
dered pumice stone and rub the iron 
on this. 



IRONING DAY 



227 



Starch may be prevented from stick- 
ing to the iron by the use of beeswax, 
paraffin, wax paper, or kerosene. To 
use beeswax, put it in a little bag of 
cloth or between two pieces of paper, 
and attach to the ironing board. Rub 
the iron over this. Save the paraffin 
on the tops of jars of jelly, melt up, 
and pour into a mold to cool. Put 
this in a cloth bag and use the same 
as beeswax. 

Or save the wax papers that come 
in cracker boxes or the inside linings 
of laundry soap, and rub the irons on 
these. 

Or have at hand a cloth saturated 
with kerosene, and rub the iron over 
this. These methods all tend to make 
the ironing easier by lessening the 
friction and also keep the iron clean 
and give polish to the fabrics. 

Cautions. — Never use irons for 
cracking nuts or hammering nails. 
Never allow them to become red hot. 
They do not retain the heat equally 
throughout afterwards and will al- 
ways be rough. Do not keep them on 
the stove when not in use without pro- 
tecting them from the heat by as- 
bestos. 

To Heat Irons. — Irons wiU heat 
more quickly and with less fuel and 
will keep hot longer if an iron or 
tin pan is turned over them while 
heating. A sheet-iron pan, like a 
bread pan, is best for this purpose, 
but a deep dripping pan, frying pan, 
or solid tin pan may be used. ' This 
will be found especially important in 
summer, when a hot fire is unbear- 
able. When gas is used, if a pan is 
turned over the flatirons and a tea- 
kettle placed on top, hot water also 
may be had with the use of a single 
burner. 

To Test the Heat of Irons. — ^The 
iron is hotter when a drop of water 
will run along the surface than when 
it is immediately evaporated. A very 
hot iron will form a cushion of steam 
which will keep the drop from the 
surface. Hence if a drop of water 
sticks and immediately evaporates, the 
iron is not sufficiently hot for some 
purposes. 



Holders for Irons. — A thin sheet of 
asbestos between two folds of cloth 
makes the best holder for flatirons. 
A square piece of leather, cut from 
the top of an old boot and put be- 
tween two thicknesses of cloth, is con- 
venient and comfortable. These hold- 
ers may be bound with bratd. 

To Hang Up an Ironing Board. — 
Put screw eyes on the end of the iron- 
ing board so that it can be hung 
from nails on the wall or the inside 
of pantry doors. 

Covers for Ironing Boards. — Make 
two or three covers for the ironing 
board to fit tightly when drawn on, 
like a pillowcase. When one is soiled 
another may be substituted. The 
quickness and convenience with which 
these may be changed will soon pay 
for the labor of making them. A 
somewhat looser calico bag to slip 
over the board when not in use will 
keep it clean. Old sheets and dis- 
carded wrappers will furnish materials 
for these covers. 

To Arrange the Ironing Board. — 
Fix two heavy screw eyes in the broad 
end of an ironing board and attach 
to these a piece of strong picture wire 
the same as if you intended to hang 
the ironing board like a picture upon 




"Leaves the End Unobstructed." 

the wall. Screw into the top of the 
baseboard, high enough from the floor 
to be out of the way of mops and 
brooms, two strong screw hooks. Now 
draw a stand or narrow table oppo- 



228 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVEEIES 



site these screw hooks in such a way 
that the broad end of the ironing 
board may rest upon it while the nar- 
row end projects into the room. In 
this position the ironing board should 
about balance, but of course the pres- 
sure of the iron on the unsupported 
end would cause it to tip. Now catch 
the wire guys attached to the broad 
end of the ironing board over the two 
screw hooks in the baseboard. These 
will prevent the narrow end of the 
board from tipping, and leave it im- 
obstructed, so that skirts, shirts, and 
other similar articles may be slipped 
over it conveniently. 

IBOITIKG 

To Iron Shirts. — Starch the shirt 
bosoms, collars, and cuffs in cooked 
starch containing also wax or lard or 
other siniilar substance. The addition 
of gum arable wiU increase the stiff- 
ness. First use the common iron in 
the usual way, making the surface 
smooth, but without polishing. Iron 
first the back and sleeves, next the 
collar and bosom, last the front. This 
dull or domestic finish, as it is called, 
is preferred by many persons to a 
high polish, but if the latter is de- 
sired use a smooth hard-wood board 
covered rather thickly with cloth on 
one side, but not on the other. First 
use the padded side of the board, 
ironing the bosom smooth, then turn 
the board, lay the bosom upon the 
hard wood, take the polishing iron, and 
polish by rubbing vigorously cross- 
wise. A good polishing iron should 
weigh between 6 and 7 pounds and 
have a rounded edge at the heel. The 
iron is not laid down flat, but only 
the edge of the heel is used to give 
the polish. Keep the iron very hot 
and dampen the bosom slightly before 
using it by brushing with a damp 
cloth or sponge. If the bosom rises 
in wavelike blisters, dampen it slightly 
and go over it again. It requires a 
little care to use a polishing iron, but 
with experience any laundress can give 
as good a polish as can be produced 
in a steam laundry. A greater finish 



can be obtained by laying over the 
bosom a cloth dipped in starch just 
before the polishing iron is applied. 

To Iron Colored Goods. — Colored 
goods should be ironed, when possible, 
before they are quite dry. They 
should not, as a rule, be sprinkled nor 
allowed to lie over night. The iron 
should be allowed to cool slightly, as 
delicate colors, especially pinks and 
greens, will frequently fade as soon 
as they are touched by a hot iron. 
The pink may turn to purple and the 
green to blue. 

If, however, colored goods cannot 
be ironed the day they are washed, 
they should not be allowed to lie over 
night in a wet condition, but should 
first be thoroughly dried and then 
slightly dampened just before iron- 
ing by roUing them in a damp cloth 
and allowing them to stand for fif- 
teen or twenty minutes. 

Press colored goods on the wrong 
side, especially the collars and cuffs. 
Iron on the right side no more than 
is absolutely necessary to take out the 
wrinkles. 

To Iron Blacls; Sateen and Farmer's 
Satin, — Use no starch. Iron on the 
wrong side. 

To Iron Taney Work. — Press rib- 
bons, lace, and embroidery on the 
wrong side, and iron delicate articles 
through a piece of linen. For colored 
silks and ribbons, allow the iron to 
cool slightly as with any other col- 
ored goods. 

To Iron linen. — ^The appearance of 
linen will be improved if it is ironed 
the same day it is washed and with- 
out hanging out to dry. Rinse thor- 
oughly, wring dry, and roll the Unen 
articles in a dry sheet. Let them lie 
for a time and iron dry with a hot 
iron. This saves the wear on fine linen 
of whipping on a clothesline, and gives 
an additional stiffness and luster, es- 
pecially to cheap linens and well-worn 
articles. 

To Do IJp Handkerchiefs. — ^To save 
ironing, spread the handkerchief wet 
from rinsing water on a clean pane 
of glass or mirror. When dry, fold 
and lay away. Guests at summer 



IRONING DAY 



229 



hotels and persons who are boarding 
will find this plan very convenient. 
It is especially desirable for fine linen 
and delicate lace handkerchiefs, to 
save the wear and tear of the laun- 
dry. 

Ironing Hints. — Table linen and 
handkerchiefs frequently show wear 
where the customary folds have been 
ironed in. To save wear press the arti- 
cle all over until perfectly dry, vrithout 
folding. Then fold and press the folds 
lightly with a hot iron. The appear- 
ance will be the same as if the folds 
had been ironed separately, but the 
articles will wear longer. 

Large tablecloths that are awkward 
to manage without folding may be 
rolled upon curtain poles as fast as 
they are ironed. When the entire cloth 
has been ironed it may be unrolled 
and folded with a light pressure. 

The clothes wringer will smooth 
sheets, towels, pillowcases, and the 
like sufficiently vnthout ironing, and 
upon occasion these articles may be 
folded and put away rough dry. Give 
handkerchiefs one fold less than is 
customary, leaving them oblong in- 
stead of square. The economy of time 
is small, but the handkerchiefs lie 
more conveniently in the drawer. 

To Iron Embroidery. — Embroidered 
articles, as doilies, shirt waists, and 
the like, Hamburg trinunings, and 
other goods of similar texture may be 
ironed over a Turkish towel. This 
method raises the pattern clearly and 
beautifully. It may also be used for 
napkins, handkerchiefs, and table- 
cloths. The towel yields slightly, less- 
ening the labor of ironing, and the 
process adds to the appearance of the 
article. 

To Take Down Clothes. — Use care 
in wringing clothes and hanging them 
on the line. Lift tablecloths and sim- 
ilar large pieces by the middle from 
the last rinsing water, so as to straight- 
en out the selvage edge, and wring by 
hand. Hang these carefully on the 
line so that they will dry straight and 
not draw on the bias. In hanging 
clothes, straighten the collars, raise 
the bands, and open the sleeves. Fold 



carefully when taken from the line, 
or, if too cold to fold outdoors, do so 
as soon as they are brought into the 
house and before the wrinkles caused 
by packing them in the basket have 
become set. In warm weather spread 
sheets, towels, and the like upon the 
tall grass. They will need very little 
pressing, and will be bleached by the 
sun. 



TO DO UP SILKS, EIBBOXS, AND 
WOOLENS 

To Iron Silks.— Lift silks from the 
rinsing water, shake and snap them 
to remove as much water as possible 
without squeezing or wringing, and 
smooth them out on pieces of old cot- 
ton cloth or towels. Roll them up in 
these and iron as soon as possible 
without drying. Smooth pieces out 
while wet on the ironing board, lay 
over them a piece of thin white mus- 
lin, and iron on the wrong side with 
a moderate iron to prevent smutting. 
Now remove the cloth, iron perfectly 
dry on the wrong side, and smooth 
slightly, if desired, on the face with a 
warm, not hot, iron. The whole proc- 
ess of washing and ironing should 
be done as quickly as possible after 
the silk is wet, as the colors may 
be affected by lying in that condition. 

To Iron Colored Silks. — Like other 
colored goods silk should not be al- 
lowed to dry, but should be ironed 
while still damp with a warm, not 
hot, iron. Place between two cloths 
and iron on the wrong side. 

To Do Up Bibbons. — Wash same as 
other colored silks, and if stiffness is 
required, rinse in weak soapsuds con- 
taining a small amount of gum^ arable. 
Now roll the ribbon about a glass 
bottle, or wind about a small rolling- 
pin, smoothing carefully, and dry in 
the shade. 

Or smooth them out, face down, 
upon a piece of varnished wood. When 
dry they will require no ironing. 

To Remove Wrinkles from Silk. — 
Wrinkled or creased ribbons and silks 
may be restored by laying them on a 
smooth surface and sponging them 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



evenly with a sponge moistened in a 
weak solution of gum arabic. Smooth 
out while wet on a polished flat sur- 
face of wood, or roll about a rolling- 
pin and dry in the shade. Iron be- 
tween two pieces of cloth, pressing on 
the wrong side with a warm, not hot, 
iron. 

To Store Away Silks. — Do not wrap 
silks in white paper. The chloride of 
lime used to bleach the paper will at- 
tack the colors of the silk. 

To Iron Flannel and Woolen Goods. 
— Iron flannels and woolens the same 
day they are washed, if possible, and 
before they become quite dry. Take 
from the line when stUl damp, roll up 
in a dry cloth, and press on the wrong 
side with an iron not too hot. If 
they become dry they should be damp- 
ened slightly by rolling up in a damp 
cloth to await their turn. 

To Iron Blankets. — Iron blankets 
before they are quite dry, and air 
thoroughly before storing away. 

TO DO UP LACES AND CTJBTAI17S 

To Starch Laces. — Good lace does 
not require starching. Enough white 
sugar dissolved in the last rinsing 
water to make it slightly sweet should 
give it the required stiffness. 

Or boil 4 ounces of rice in 1 quart 
of water until the kernels break up. 
Strain through cheese cloth and dip 
the laces in the clear rice water. 

Or use a thin solution of gum 
arabic. 

Or mix 1 teaspoonful of cornstarch 
or wheat starch with cold water to the 
consistency of cream, beating and rub- 
bing until all is wet evenly. Dilute 
to consistency of milk vnth cold water, 
add S or 6 drops of gum arabic, and 
thin with boiling water until nearly 
transparent. Boil for 6 or 6 minutes 
until well cooked. The poorer the lace 
the more stiffness will be required. 
Hence do not dilute too much for 
poor laces. 

To Tint Laces. — For an 6cru tint 
add black coffee or powdered saffron 
to the rinsing water. Or add tea to 
give a stronger shade. Experiment 



with a small sample of the goods, add- 
ing a little more color at a time until 
the right shade is obtained. 

To Iron laces. — If laces are basted 
on cloth, and the cloth is thoroughly 
stretched, or if they are carefully 
wound about a bottle and stitched, 
they may not require any ironing. 
Lace wound about a bottle may be 
dipped into very thin starch or gum- 
arabic water without being removed, 
and may not need any ironing. Lace 
handkerchiefs may be pulled into 
shape wWle wet and carefully laid on 
a pane of glass, wrinkles being all 
smoothed out. When dry they will 
be ready for use. 

Or dry small lace articles between 
two pieces of clean white blotting 
paper under a weight, with or with- 
out ironing. When starch is used, 
do not allow laces to dry, but roll 
them in a dry towel for half an hour 
or more, and press while stiU damp, 
Iron on the wrong side over a Turk-, 
ish towel to bring up the pattern, 
protecting the articles from the iron 
with a piece of muslin or other thin 
white cloth. Use a warm, not hot, 
iron. Ironing pieces while damp great- 
ly improves their appearance; ironing 
on a soft, rough surface both protecta 
them and brings up the pattern, and 
ironing through a thin cloth makes it 
possible to bring out the points and 
pattern of the lace with the point of 
the iron without injury. New em- 
broideries should be washed and ironed 
before using. 

To Bemove Wrinkles. — If lace be- 
comes dry before ironing, or if it is 
desired to remove the wrinkles from 
clean lace without washing, hold it 
over the steam of the teakettle or a 
basin of steaming water until thor- 
oughly moistened. While damp press 
it under a weight, with or without 
blotters, or iron it as above suggested. 

To Starch Curtains. — Do not use 
much starch for lace curtains. This 
is a common mistake when curtains 
are done up at home. It is contrary 
to the essential delicacy of lace to 
make it stiff with starch. Moreover, 
the sun will rot lace which contains 



IRONING DAY 



231 



too much starch or other stiffening 
substances. Only the coarsest kind of 
lace can stand stiffening. 

To Do Up Curtains. — Starch cur- 
tains the same as other laces with a 
thin boiled cornstarch or wheat starch 
containing a solution of gum arable, 
and stretch them on suitable frames 
or otherwise to dry. If they are 
stretched properly, they will require 
no ironing or they may be pressed 
slightly when dry. 

To Iron Curtains. — ^Lay the curtains 
while still damp on a folded flannel 
blanket and press on the wrong side 
with irons as hot as possible without 
scorching. This method brings out 
raised figures and designs. 

To Prevent Scorch. — ^Wipe the iron 
on a cloth wet with kerosene. 

To Remove Scorch. — Linen articles 
and other white goods slightly scorched 
by hot irons may be restored, if the 
iibers have not been destroyed, by 
simply exposing them to the heat of 
the sun or, on dark days, to the heat 
from an open oven. Moisten them at 
intervals by sponging lightly with clear 
water. If the stains are deeper, rub 
chlorine water into the spot with a 
sponge or linen rag. 

Or run two onions through a meat 
cutter, squeeze out the juice through 
cheese cloth, and mix with half a pint 
of vinegar. Heat the mixture to a 
boil, and add a piece of hard white 
soap the size of an English walnut 
and two or three ounces of fuller's 
earth. Boil five minutes, cool, and 
pour over the scorched linen. Let it 
dry on, and afterwards remove by 
washing. Repeat if necessary. 

TO MAEE AND STOSE LINEX 

Linen Closet. — A special closet or 
wardrobe for linen is a great con- 
venience. If this is not possible, and 
linen must be packed in chests or 
bureau drawers, the various articles 
will lie one upon another so that it is 
difScult to keep them in proper order. 
The shelves of the linen closet should 
be just wide enough apart to admit of 
piles of a dozen articles of each sort. 



and just deep enough to admit one 
row of articles. Numerous shallow 
shelves relatively close together make 
a more convenient arrangement than 
deeper shelves wider apart. A little 
care devoted to making the shelves 
tight, polishing them, and coating 
them with enamel paint or varnish 
to give them a smooth and shining 
surface will be more than compen- 
sated for by the beautiful appear- 
ance of the snowy linen reflected 
upon the shelves and the ease with 
which they may be kept in perfect 
order. 

Comparatively few persons can af- 
ford a surplus of fine linen, but when 
possible, articles should be bought in 
half dozen or dozen lots and used in 
regular rotation. All fabrics will wear 
better if not used continually, but al- 
lowed to rest at intervals. 

Place linen on the shelves in regu- 
lar piles of one dozen each, and when 
it comes from the laundry sort it 
carefully and place the articles that 
have been just laundered at the bot- 
tom of the piles so that they will be 
used in regular rotation. It will as- 
sist you to do this and also to keep 
account of linen if the articles are 
numbered 1, 2, 3, 4, and so on, and 
piled in that way. 

As linen and other articles are 
often mislaid or stolen when sent to 
laundries, and sometimes taken from 
the line or blown away when spread 
on the grass to bleach, it is advisable 
to make an inventory of the contents 
of the linen closet, a copy of which 
may be fastened with thumb tacks to 
the back of the closet door, and 
checked up each time the laundered 
articles are stored away. This will 
also assist in the preparation of a 
shopping list when articles that are 
worn require to be replaced. 

While the term " linen closet " is 
used (and every housewife knows the 
good qualities of linen and would be 
glad to use it exclusively for many 
purposes), the same remarks apply to 
the disposition of cotton sheets, pil- 
lowcases, etc. These, if of good qual- 
ity and well laundered, present al- 



232 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



most as attractive an appearance as 
the linen itself, and will equally re- 
pay the same care and attention. A 
separate place should be set apart 
for those articles which have become 
worn past their original uses, and they 
should be laundered and stored in the 
linen closet until opportunity offers 
for making them up into covers for 
the ironing board, dishcloths, dish 
towels, and the many other uses men- 
tioned elsewhere. Old linen is es- 
pecially valuable for many purposes, 
and the discarded articles should be 
carefully stored in an orderly fashion 
instead of being thrust, as is too often 
the case, helter-skelter into the com- 
mon ragbag. 

When linen has been properly laun- 
dered, aired, and stored in the linen 
closet, nothing is required for the fur- 
ther care of articles in ordinary use 
except to preserve them from damp- 
ness and insects. The various essen- 
tial oils and other perfume-bearing 
substances will assist in preserving 
linen from the attacks of insects. The 
use of thyme, mint, and lavender for 
this purpose by good housekeepers in 
colonial days and in England is pro- 
verbial. Bags containing any or all 
of the following may be employed for 
this purpose: 

Spices, as powdered cloves, mace, 
nutmeg, and cinnamon. 

Flowers of any sort, dried and mixed 
with spices. 

Odorous leaves, as mint, balm, south- 
ernwood, laurel, geranium, sweet mar- 
joram, rosemary, hyssop, and orig- 
anum. 

Roots, as orris and angelica. 

Perfumed woods, as sandalwood, 
rosewood, cassia, sassafras, rhodium. 

Anjmal perfumes, as ambergris, 
musk, and civet. 

Or essential oils extracted from any 
of these. 

To Store linens. — If linen articles 
are not in constant use they should 
be wrapped in brovni, blue, or other 
dark-colored paper, as the bleaching 
powder and other forms of chlorine 
used in bleaching white and light-col- 
ored papers have a tendency to turn 



linen articles yellow, and so does ex- 
posure to air and simlight. 

To Prepare Linen for the Wash.— 
It will be found a matter of economy 
to examine the linen before it goes to 
the laundry and remove all stains, and 
also mend bracks, tears, and worn 
places before the articles are washed. 
Otherwise they may catch on the 
washboard or in the washing machine, 
or be whipped by the wind, caught by 
a flatiron, or otherwise made larger 
than is necessary. Here, as elsewhere, 
" a stitch in time saves nine." 

Marking linen. — A good stamping 
outfit may be obtained very cheaply 
and linen may be stamped with initials 
that can afterwards be worked over 
with embroidery. Large Gothic let- 
ters appear to be most approved for 
this purpose. 

Or, by the use of a few cents' worth 
of carbon paper, which may be ob- 
tained of any stationer, linen may be 
stamped by tracing over any desired 
pattern. A paper pattern may be 
used for this purpose, or one article 
may be sent away to be marked and 
the initial' afterwards transferred to 
the others by tracing over with car- 
bon. 

Before starting to work on any 
stamped linen, take a copy of the de- 
sign on a piece of paper for dupli- 
cates, which may then be transferred, 
at very small expense of time and 
trouble, by means of carbon paper to 
other articles. 

Or plain articles may be marked by 
tracing the initial with a soft lead 
pencil and going over the outline with 
the sewing machine, using any color 
of silk thread that may be desired. 

Or apply marking ink with a steel 
pen or fine camel's-hair brush. For 
recipe, see under " Ink " elsewhere in 
this volume. 

To Hem Table Linen. — Draw a 
thread at either end and cut straight 
across. Turn the hem through the 
narrow hemmer of an unthreaded sew- 
ing machine. This makes a narrower 
and more even hem than can be turned 
by hand. 

The difficulty of drawing the thread 



IRONING DAY 



from linen is much lessened if a 
piece of castile or other hard white 
soap is first rubbed carefully over the 
threads. 

Tablecloth Economics. — If a table- 
cloth wears around the edge by rub- 
bing against the table, draw threads 
on either side of the worn place, cut 
straight across, and sew together with 
a perfectly flat, even seam. This wiU 
hardly be noticed, and the tablecloth 
will be almost like new. 

When buying new tablecloths get a 
half yard extra material and from 
time to time take a narrow strip off 
one of the ends. This will bring the 
creases in different places and pre- 
vent the cloth from wearing where it 
is creased in the laundry. Ravelings 
taken from these strips will be found 
the best material with which to darn 
frayed places. 

When a tablecloth is past its proper 
use it is still available for many pur- 
poses. The whole parts will make an 
excellent bread cloth and one or more 



tray cloths or napkins suitable for 
lunches and picnics, or for use par- 
ticularly in the fruit season, when the 
best napkins often receive peach and 
other fruit stains that are so difficult 
to remove. The small pieces make the 
• best of silver polishers, as they are so 
soft that they will not scratch the 
finest silver. 

Or figured centerpieces may some- 
times be embroidered, as for stamped 
linen, and made to do duty as doilies 
and lunch cloths. 

Toweling. — Raw linen towels can 
be purchased at surprisingly low 
prices, and under proper care may be 
perfectly bleached in the laundry. Or 
remnants of tablecloth damask may 
be picked up, cut to the proper length, 
and hemstitched all around, or fin- 
ished in drawn work and decorated 
with embroidered initials. For ordi- 
nary uses nothing is more satisfactory 
than wash crash toweUng, which wears 
well, has a good appearance, and saves 
the wear of linen towels. 



CHAPTER VIII 

SEWING AND MENDING DAY 

THE SEWING ROOM— USE AND CARE OF SEWING MACHINE— SEW- 
ING-ROOM CONVENIENCES— MENDING— RENOVATING— MAKING 
OVER— FANCY WORK 



In the regular routine of weekly- 
work it is a good plan to set aside a 
day in which all garments may be 
mended, altered, or made over. The 
day following ironing day is usually 
most convenient. Then the piles of 
stockings that are to be darned, and 
any other articles from the weekly 
wash that may require a " stitch in 
time," can be added to the other 
mending that has accumulated during 
the week, and the whole disposed of. 

THE SEWIN& BOOM 

The woman who has a room in her 
house which can be set apart solely as 
a sewing room knows not how to value 
her blessing. She doesn't probably 
appreciate the importance of such a 




"Set Apart as a Sewing Room." 

room until she comes into possession 
of it; then she wonders how she ever 
lived without it. Where there are 
many children this need is all the 
greater. The sewing room is not 



necessarily a large room, but it is im- 
portant that there be good light so 
that the eyesight may not suffer by 
even the finest work. It is sometimes 
impossible to set aside a small room 
that is light. In this case, if the 
house contains a dark room op the 
upper floor it may be used by pro- 
viding a skylight, which may be done 
at small cost. These inside dark rooms 
are often used as storerooms, and if 
large, may be partitioned off so that 
a portion may still be so employed. 
If possible the sewing room should be 
provided with closets. One of these 
should be fiUed with shelves on which 
to place boxes of various sizes, small 
boxes on the upper shelves, and large 
boxes on the lower ones. 

Closet with Shelves. — ^A good sew- 
ing-room closet may be devised as fol- 
lows: have one broad top shelf which 
holds a collection of strong boxes, 
such as shirt, hat, suit, collar, and 
shoe boxes, as receptacles for all the 
hundred-and-one things employed in 
sewing. A light framework may be 
formed of a few pieces of wood so 
arranged as to support the upper 
boxes, permitting the lower ones to be 
withdrawn easily. Each box should 
be labeled. Shoe boxes are useful for 
rolls of tape, whalebones, and similar 
articles. One box should contain white 
hooks and eyes and another black 
ones. Buttons may be put in another 
small box. Colored sewing silks should 
have a separate box from buttonhole 
twist, and the various spools of black, 
white, and colored thread should have 



234 



SEWING AND MENDING DAY 



235 



a box by themselves. Other boxes 
should be labeled for lace, embroid- 
ery, white goods, remnants, canvas, 
bones and casings, shields, linings, vel- 
vets, silks, etc. Have for the lace box 
a. large box labeled "Laces," within 
which are several smaller ones labeled 
edging, Honiton, motifs, insertion, 
beading, etc. The button box may 
also contain a collection of smaller 
boxes, each holding sets of buttons, 
with one button fastened to the cover, 
to indicate its contents. This plan 
will prove a great time-saver to 
anyone in the family who sews or 
mends. 

Shopping list. — ^When any item is 
"out" it should be immediately put 
on the shopping list. A pad for this 
purpose tacked to the closet door, 
with pencil attached, will prove a great 
convenience. When the shopper of the 
family goes to the city her list is then 
always ready. 

In this closet a box containing shoe 
buttons, cords, thread, needles (or the 
cord with needles attached), should 
also find its place. 

Darning Cotton, Needles, etc. — ^A 
convenient receptacle for various col- 
ored darning cottons, darning needles, 
mending balls, etc., is a suitable box. 
It is a good idea also to drop a cheap 
thimble into the darning box. 

Closet for Unfinished Garments.— 
A second closet is desirable in the 
sewing room, which should be provided 
with hooks on which to hang various 
dresses, coats, and other articles dur- 
ing their construction. If it is possi- 
ble to provide the room with a bureau 
or chest of drawers it will be found 
a most convenient receptacle for all 
the little rolls of left-over material 
that are of great value on mending 
day. 

Bureau in the Sewing Boom. — If 
the family is not large, each mem- 
ber may have his or her own " piece 
drawer." Should the family be very 
large and the number of drawers in- 
sufficient, bags of outing flannel, cre- 
tonne, or similar material may be pro- 
vided as a supplement, showing the 
name of each person on the outside. 



and these may be hung below the 
shelves in the closet. 

An Economical Closet. — If neces- 
sary a closet may be constructed in 
the sewing room by nailing shelves to 
the wall in one corner over which a 
curtain may be hung. A second closet 
may be made by nailing to the wall 
a strip of wood bearing hooks, upon 
which to hang tmfinished garments. A 
curtain may also be used to protect 
these. 

Or, instead of shelves built in the 
corner, a large dry-goods box may be 
fitted with shelves, and the top and 
sides covered with green or other col- 
ored oilcloth. Place a rod across the 
front from which may depend a cur- 
tain of flowered silkoUne or any other 
preferred material to hide the accu- 
mulation of sewing. The articles to 
be repaired should be placed on one 
shelf, the material to be made up on 
another, and the sewing basket and 
various boxes on a third shelf. If the 
sewing-room closet is arranged ac- 
cording to the above suggestions it is 
always possible to find the needed 
scrap of lace, silk, or dress furnishing 
upon a moment's notice. 

TTSE ANI) CABE OF SEWING MACHINE 

The Sewing Machine. — The position 
that is to be ocupied by the sewing 
machine should be where the light is 
the best in the room. It is preferable 
that the light fall at the left-hand 
side of the worker. 

The woman who uses the sewing 
machine should know how to treat it 
if she wishes her machine to always 
run light, and to thus save herself 
from backaches. 

Care of the Sewing Machine. — If a 
machine runs hard, one of the best 
remedies is to give it a generous kero- 
sene or gasoline bath. Most of the 
linty accumulations are caught by the 
feed. These may be easily reached by 
removing both the slides and the feed 
plate, which is held in place by a sin- 
gle screw. After these parts are re- 
moved slip off the plate, turn back 
the head of the machine with a small 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



pointed implement, and with a soft 
cloth carefully remove the particles of 
dirt. 

To Glean with Kerosene. — If the 
machine runs hard oil it generously 
with kerosene, using from a half pint 
to a pint. Run it rapidly for a few 
minutes, then with a piece of new 
cheese cloth carefully rub off the kero- 
sene and oil again with machine oil. 
The kerosene cuts away the gummed 
oil, and the machine oil lubricates the 
parts. 

To Clean with Gasoline. — Nothing 
is better than gasoline to limber up a 
sewing machine. Apply the gasoline 
as above recommended for kerosene, 
after which carefully rub off and ap- 
ply machine oil. 

To Oil a Sewing Uachine. — It is 
surprising that some machines wiU 
sew at all, they are so seldom oiled or 
cleaned. 

Put a few drops of oil in all the 
oil holes, run the machine rapidly, 
wipe off all surplus oil outside the oil 
holes, and the machine is ready for 
use. Two minutes will suffice for the 
operation. 

Sewing-machine Troubles. — The 
prevailing difficulty in using sewing 
machines is the breaking of the thread. 
Other disarrangements seem easy to 
adjust, even to a person who has used 
a machine but a few weeks or perhaps 
days. The breaking, which is mostly 
with the upper thread, may be caused 
by an imperfect adjustment of the 
tension; this is usually the case with 
new machines. But with those that 
have been in use several months the 
breaking (if the tension is right) is 
produced by the threads drawing into 
the guides, so that when a swelled 
place in the thread cannot pass the 
narrow groove, which is the exact 
width of the thread, it breaks. This 
break takes place anywhere from the 
point of the needle back to the grooved 
guide. As the breakage is usually 
near the needle, the real cause is gen- 
erally overlooked. Many machines are 
laid aside on account of this continual 
breaking when, if the cause had been 
understood, the guide holes might 



have been smoothed with a small file 
and the trouble ended. 

If a sewing machine gets into a 
" mood " and refuses to budge, no 
matter what the stuff is nor how it is 
presented, thick or thin, single or 
double, lay a slip of paper each side 
the seam, being careful to put it un- 
der the presser foot, and sew with an 
even, steady force. The paper can be 
removed after sewing. 

SEWING-BOOU CONVENIENCES 

A gas or oil stove to heat irons for 
pressing is an added convenience to 
the sewing room. Two irons should 
be kept in the sewing room so as not 
to interfere with the laundry irons. 

A Skirt Board and a Narrow Sleeve 
Board are also necessities. When not 
in use, the closet in which unfinished 
garments are hung is a handy place 
for keeping all such conveniences. 

The Worktable. — 'A convenient cut- 
ting table is made with leaves that 
may be dropped when the cutting is 
finished, and should be as large as the 
size of the room will allow. If the 
room is small, a folding table a yard 
long may take the place of the larger 
one. 

A Handy Sewing Table may be 
made by using the legs of an old ordi- 
nary sewing table. 

Or have the legs made to allow for 
a top 8 feet long by 3 feet wide. The 
top should consist of two pieces of 
equal length with a. difference of J of 
an inch in thickness, the thinner piece 
to be built up with felt or blotting 
paper to match the thicker, thus mak- 
ing the table half felt covered and 
half bare wood. All pressing can 
then be done on the felt without leav- 
ing unsightly marks. All work re- 
quiring a hard surface may be done 
on the plain uncovered wood, and the 
length of the table allows for cut- 
ting garments of any dimensions. 
The felt keeps the materials from 
slipping, as they wiU do on a smooth 
table. 

The Workbasket.— The workbasket 
should be equipped with several pairs 



SEWING AND MENDING DAY 



237 



of sharp scissors, needles of various 
sizes for both fine and coarse work, 
and thread of different numbers and 
colors. Work cannot be done in a. 
creditable manner unless one is in pos- 
session of the needful tools. 

A well-equipped sewing room takes 
away much of the drudgery of mend- 
ing day. During the week articles 
will have accumulated in the sewing 
basket to be mended or renovated, 
and the many conveniences of the sew- 
ing room will come into play during 
the weekly process of putting the 
various family garments in repair. 

Patterns. — Patterns may be in de- 
mand at any moment, hence a con- 
venient holder should be provided. 
This may be made of a stout, short 
box divided into compartments, one 
for each member of the family. The 
compartments are made by gluing in 
pieces of cardboard. Arrange the pat- 
terns on their sides so that they may 
be examined like a card index without 
removing the box. Patterns should be 
gone over once or twice a year in 
order to discard those that have gone 
out of fashion, and hence will not 
be used again. When discarding pat- 
terns, those made of soft paper should 
not be thrown away, as they are use- 
ful for shaving paper, polishing mir- 
rors, glass, silver, etc. 

Or patterns may be kept intact by 
a series of pockets made in the fol- 
lowing manner: take two yards of 
any suitable goods such as gingham 
or cretonne; tear it in half; cut one 
yard into strips 9 inches wide, hem- 
ming one edge; stitch the strips 
lengthwise, dividing the whole into 
five strips, making four 6 inches wide 
and th? fifth 3 inches wide. Sew these 
strips to the remaining yard, thus 
making sixteen pockets 9 by 6 inches, 
and three pockets 9 by 3 inches. Label 
the large pockets shirt waists, shirts, 
dresses, aprons, etc. The labeling may 
be done with India ink. A convenient 
place for this pattern receptacle is the 
inside of the closet door. 

Bags. — No conveniences of the sew- 
ing room are more to be valued than 
bags, which may be used for various 



purposes, such as scrap bags, bags for 
waste thread, button bags, sewing 
bags, etc. 

Scrap Bags. — When the annual 
spring cleaning is finished all pieces 
of cloth that have accumulated during 
the winter should be sorted and put 
in bags labeled to denote their con- 
tents. One bag may be marked calico, 
another linings, another silk, and so 
on. The labeling may be done with 
India ink, or by writing on a small 
slip of paper pasted on the outside 
of each bag. If odd pieces of cloth 
are cared for in this manner, it enables 
one to lay the hand upon any desired 
article at a moment's notice when do- 
ing the weekly mending. The top of 
the bag should be finished with casing 
and draw string, so as to hang on a 
hook in the closet. 

Bags for Waste Thread. — It is of- 
ten a tedious task to pick up the waste 
threads and cuttings after a day's 
sewing. This arduous duty may be 
greatly lessened by hanging a small 
basket or open-mouthed bag near the 
sewing machine into which cuttings 
and threads may be dropped. 

Button Bags. — Almost every gar- 
ment calls for a button on mending 
day. This constant demand makes it 
very convenient to have them near at 
hand. A button bag may be made by 
taking a circular piece of goods, hem- 
ming it all around, and crocheting an 
edge around it with thread or floss. 
Run a cord through the floss, and 
fasten with a round button, then draw 
up the cord and wind it several times 
around. This prevents the contents 
from spilling into the workbasket. 

A classified arrangement of the but- 
tons is both a necessity and a time- 
saving device. A box is usually pro- 
vided for this purpose and buttons of 
the same kind run on a string. This 
enables one to find the button needed 
without trouble. 

Sewing and Handkerchief Bags. — 
Sewing bags, handkerchief bags, etc., 
are usually made with a. round bot- 
tom, cardboard being used for the 
purpose. This soon breaks and often 
the bag is a wreck before it is even 



238 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



soiled. A tin bottom is much more 
durable and may be obtained from 
the tin lids foimd under the cover of 
lard pails. The ridge may be flattened 
with a hammer. Several sizes may 
be obtained from three-pound, five- 
pound, and ten-pound pails. 

Needles. — If needles are left in the 
paper in which they are bought, and 
carelessly dropped into the wastebas- 
ket, it often happens that the very 
size needle one wishes to use is lying 
loose in the basket, and hence not 
discernible. Therefore it is advisable 
to place needles of different sizes in 
needlebooks. 

Flannel should not be used in 
needlebooks because the sulphur used 
in its preparation will rust the needles. 
Fine linen or chamois leather is to be 
preferred. 

To Prevent Needles from Rusting. 
— ^Those who live in damp regions find 
great difficulty in keeping their sew- 
ing-machine and other needles from 
becoming covered with rust. A good 
preventive is to put the needles in a 
suitable cloth thoroughly saturated 
with machine oil. Soak in oil the 
papers in which sewing needles come. 
These may then be kept in a small tin 
can or box so as to protect the ma- 
chine drawer. 

To Sharpen Uachine Needles. — The 
points of machine needles often be- 
come bent or blunt by striking upon 
the feed plate. They may be sharp- 
ened and made as good as new by 
rubbing them over a small hone for 
that purpose, which can be had at 
any hardware store. A good sub- 
stitute for the needle hone is to re- 
volve the point of the needle upon 
the smooth side of a piece of hand 
pumice. 

Picking Up Scissors and Needles. 
— One is very apt to drop scissors and 
needles upon the floor. The annoy- 
ance and labor of constantly picking 
them up may be greatly lessened by 
attaching a horseshoe magnet to a 
long cord or ribbon. Give this a place 
in your workbasket and it is an ever- 
ready helper when these articles fall 
on the floor. Invalids and elderly 



ladies wUl find this little convenience 
an especial boon. 

Threading Needles. — The old way 
was to thread a lot of needles and 
stick them in a cushion. This seemed 
to be a great time saver, when the 
busy woman surveyed her cushion cov- 
ered with a half dozen or more needles, 
with their streams of thread trailing 
over it. But when the threads became 
tangled, the time-saving device fell 
flat. A much better way is to thread 
a nvunber of needles on a spool of 
thread, leaving a few inches imrolled, 
so that they will not fall off. When 
a needle full of thread is wanted, all 
the needles but one may be pushed 
back as the' thread is unroUed to al- 
low the breaking off of any length of 
thread. Many women thread a needle 
before working the thread off the 
spool, as it prevents the thread from 
snarling. 

Threading a Darning Needle. — 
Draw the cotton tight across the point 
of the needle and put the thread 
double through the eye of the needle. 

Care of Thread. — There are many 
devices for keeping intact spools of 
thread. The following is one of the 
most convenient: cut two elliptical 
(egg-shaped) pieces of cardboard, 
covering both sides of them with some 
pretty colored material. Pieces of 
cardboard 3| inches in length will hold 
in place three spools of thread. After 
covering the cardboard puncture three 
holes through the middle of each 
board. Take three spools of thread 
of different sizes, place the coarsest 
at the largest end, graduating them 
according to size of spool, and lace 
a piece of baby ribbon or bobbin tape, 
first through one side of the ellipse, 
then through the spool and the second 
piece of cardboard, drawing it in turn 
through a second spool, and the mid- 
dle hole of the second cardboard, and 
so on until the three spools are held 
in place. Bring the ends of the rib- 
bon or tape together in the center of 
the ellipse, slipping one end over the 
small loop caused by running the 
thread through the middle hole, and 
tie in a bow. This will be found to 



SEWING AND MENDING DAY 



be one of the most convenient devices 
for always keeping the thread in 
place, and is small enough to drop 
into the workbasket, where it may be 
kept clean. If it is desired to join 
more than three spools, the pieces of 
cardboard may be cut larger. 

Or a convenient device for holding 
thread may be made by driving nails 
into a piece of wood made as a shelf 
over the machine, or it may be made 
to fit the bottom of the machine 
drawer. The spools of thread can be 
kept on the naUs, sorted according to 
size and color. This or any similar 
arrangement saves both time and pa- 
tience. 

Scissors. — ^There is no article in the 
household more useful than the scis- 
sors, and the sewing room should be 
well fitted out with various sizes of 
scissors as follows: 

Cutting Scissors. — A pair of ban- 
dage scissors like those used by sur- 
geons is useful when trimming the 
necks and armholes of dresses, be- 
cause there is no danger of sharp 
points being thrust into the skin. 

Scissors with Long Blades are pre- 
ferred for cutting heavy cloth or 
woolen fabrics, and indeed all gar- 
ments where there are long lines to be 
followed. 

Scissors for Cutting Waists. — 
Waists and children's garments, where 
the curves are short and numerous, are 
much more conveniently cut out when 
the blades of the scissors are of 
mediiun length. 

Embroidery Scissors. — For trim- 
ming the edges of embroidery, snip- 
ping threads, and cutting out goods 
from close corners, fine, slender, deli- 
cately pointed scissors are found the 
best. 

Buttonhole Scissors. — Embroidery 
scissors may also be used in place of 
buttonhole scissors. Buttonhole scis- 
sors, however, are a great convenience 
in the sewing room. 

To Silence Noisy Scissors. — When 
one has much cutting to do the con- 
stant squeaking of the scissors is very 
annoying. It is a simple matter, 
however, tb correct this by breathing 



into the open hii^ge, after which open 
and close the scissors several times. 

Dull Scissors. — If it is not con- 
venient to send your scissors to a scis- 
sors grinder, there are simple devices 
by which you may sharpen them. 

Open the scissors around the neck 
of a small bottle and work them vigor- 
ously> for a few minutes. 

Or open the scissors, hold them 
firmly against the table or machine, 
and with an ordinary file, not too 
coarse, file both blades just as if you 
were trying to take the edge off. If 
your scissors are of good quality, you 
will find this very satisfactory. 

Pins. — Every housewife, no doubt, 
has had some trouble in keeping track 
of her pins when at the machine, or 
otherwise engaged in sewing. The 
sewing room should, therefore, be 
equipped with conveniences for taking 
care of these useful little articles. 
Otherwise a great many may be lost 
during a day's sewing or mending. 

One very simple way of keeping 
pins ever ready and at hand is to at- 
tach a little piece of flannel or canvas 
to the spool holder, in which to stick 
pins. If your spool holder is a de- 
vice which rests upon your sewing, 
then your pins are convenient. If it 
be a convenience attached to the ma- 
chine you have your pins at hand 
when you sit down to stitch. 

Or a small pincushion may be hung 
from the tension of the sewing ma- 
chine. 

Or a cushion two or three inches in 
length may be made of some pretty 
muslin or flannel goods and pinned 
to your waist near the shoulder. This 
last device provides you with pins, 
whether you are at the machine or 
sewing in any other part of the house. 

A Useful Work Case. — There is 
nothing more charming, useful, or con- 
venient than the old-fashioned house- 
wife our grandmothers used, equipped 
with pockets for scissors, buttons, 
thread, and thimblesi with cushions at- 
tached for needles and pins. This 
may be carried to any part of the 
house, in or out of the sewing room, 
and is always ready. 



240 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



Convenient Tape Measure. — If a 
yard measure is not already marked 
off on your machine, time is saved if 
you mark one off for yourself. A very 
easy way to do it is to take as many 
common pins as you will need, and 
cut them about half an inch below the 
head. Measure a yard off on your 
machine. Drive one of the pin heads 
into the wood, then one at the half, 
third, fourth, and eighth of a yard. 
This does not deface the machine, is 
not conspicuous, and unless you have 
" a place for everything and every- 
thing in its place," will save time when 
the tape measure is mislaid or lost. 

Six-inch Rule. — For measuring 
hems or for any measurement where 
six inches or less is desired, a six-inch 
rule is a convenient article to have in 
your workbasket. 

Crayon as a Marker. — Sometimes 
when you are using your tucker on 
your sewing machine the marker will 
not show on the goods to be tucked. 
If you rub a piece of crayon over the 
marker the line will be perfectly dis- 
tinct. 

To Renovate a Tape Measure. — If 
your tape measure is still good and 
the figures have become dim, you can 
trace them over with a fine-pointed 
brush and India ink. 

Bust Form. — It does not always hap- 
pen that there is another woman in 
the house on whom to fit a new gar- 
ment or a lining with which to reno- 
vate an old waist. If the woman who 
does her own sewing once becomes 
possessor of a bust form, she wiU 
wonder how it was possible to have 
done without it. These articles cov- 
ered with black jersey and very light 
in weight can be had in aU sizes at 
any department store or mail-order 
establishment for about SO cents. It 
is not only possible with a bust form 
to fit your own waist but, owing to 
the fact that it extends about 13 
inches below the waist, to have the 
added advantage of well-shaped hips 
over which to drape skirts. 

Clothes Hints. — If it were possible 
to equip the sewing room with such 
conveniences as we have suggested. 



and many other little devices, mend- 
ing day would be less dreaded. And 
the labor would be further lightened 
if every member of the family would 
heed the following cautions about 
their clothing: 

Give your clothes an occasional 
vacation. 

Don't carry heavy articles in coat 
or trousers pockets; or, if they must 
be carried thus, empty the pockets 
before the garments are laid away. 

Don't wear your street jacket dur- 
ing business hours. 

Don't be pasBimonious in the qual- 
ity or quantity of your clothes. 

Don't spoil the shape of your 
trousers by suspending them by the 
buckle ; fold them and hang them over 
a rod, or lay them flat on a shelf or 
in a bureau drawer. 

Don't wear the same shoes every 
day if you can avoid it. 

Don't neglect to brush every article 
of outside clothing before laying it 
aside. 

Don't wear the nap off soft cloth 
by using a whisk broom; use a brush. 

Don't forget to elude moths by 
wrapping in newspapers freshly print- 
ed the garments you lay away. 

Don't let a stain remain with the 
hope that it wUl disappear; the older 
the stain the harder it is to remove. 

Don't plunge your foot into a sock; 
turn the upper part of the sock down 
before inserting the foot, then draw 
it on easily and gently. 

Don't suspend your jacket by a 
loop; drape it over a hanger. 

Don't spoil the shape of your pock- 
ets by thrusting your hands into them 
constantly. 

MENDIITG 

Garments that are neatly mended 
wiU last much longer than those care- 
lessly repaired. It is impossible, there- 
fore, to expend too much pains on this 
homely and prosaic occupation. There 
are many American women who think 
that it is not economy to spend much 
time in mending. In Paris some years 
ago the demand for mending became 



SEWING AND MENDING DAY 



241 



so graat that it became a trade, and 
finally developed into an art. The 
French woman has great love for her 
clothes, and her first wish is to make 
them as beautiful and perfect as pos- 
sible. She regards it as a profanation 
to let her garments become defaced 
with spot or tear. If she finds it be- 
yond her skill to repair a torn or 
worn garment, she immediately hur- 
ries it off to the woman whose special 
business is to make a garment " as 
good as new." These experts can 
mend a rent or set in a piece so skill- 
fully that the " little dress tragedies " 
are soon forgotten. To the French 
woman, therefore, it is not only econ- 
omy to have a garment mended, but 
the art of caring for things with ex- 
quisite nicety bespeaks for her an ele- 
gance which she may not otherwise 
seem to possess. 

When mending day comes around 
the busy woman may find it hard to 
recall the things that need attention. 
Her memory may be assisted by re- 
cording in a small blank book the arti- 
cles that have been put out of service 
through rents or tears or lack of but- 
tons and the like. Then when mend- 
ing day comes round the memoran- 
dum may be consulted. 

In making up garments some of the 
material of each should be reserved 
and put in one of the numerous bags 
that have their place in the sewing 
room or attic closet. On ironing day 
all articles that need mending should 
be sent to the sewing room to await 
their turn on mending day. Anything 
that does not find its way to the reg- 
ular weekly wash should be periodi- 
cally examined, all rents sewed up, 
stains removed, and any other neces- 
sary renovation attended to during 
the regular weekly routine. 

The table linen should be carefvilly 
examined before laying away. If tow- 
els are wearing thin in the middle they 
may be cut in halves, the two outer 
edges sewed together, and rehemmed. 
The woman who systematically mends 
every article of the household will 
prove true the well-known aphorism 
that " a stitch in time saves nine." 



Mending Pieces. — A large patent 
envelope with a sample bit pinned to 
the outside is a good receptacle for 
, mending pieces, the advantages beingi 
that moths cannot get at woolen ones, 
and that dust is kept out. 

Way to Provide ilending Pieces. — 
It often happens in making wash gar- 
ments that only the tiniest bits are 
left over. Some women provide mend-i^ 
ing pieces by making an apron of the 
same material as the dress. Then 
when the sleeves or other worn places 
must be renewed, the slightly faded 
and partly worn apron may be util- 
ized, and the patch wiU not be con- 
spicuous. 

Or, when a wash dress goes to the 
laundry, bits of the goods may be 
basted on the wrong side of the 
skirt so that they wiU fade evenly 
and come out the same color as the; 
garment. 

Mending Tissue. — If court plaster 
or mending tissue is used instead of 
thread, a rent in cloth may be mended 
so that it will be hard to detect. Lay 
the cloth upon a, smooth, flat surface, 
stick a pin perpendicularly into it so 
as to hold the edges firmly together, 
but not too close to the tear; about 
three fourths of an inch away is a 
good distance. Apply court plaster 
which has been well moistened, and 
allow it to stand long enough to be- 
come sticky rather than wet. Care- 
fully rub the dress goods against the 
court plaster until every particle of 
the surface adheres. Then press the 
spot with a moderately hot iron 
through a piece of muslin or tissue 
paper. If any frayed threads remain, 
carefully clip them off with sharp 
scissors. 

Darning on Woolen Goods. — Silk or 
cotton thread should never be used to 
darn woolen goods. To make an in- 
visible darn use ravelings from the 
goods to be darned. After carefully 
darning the edges, turn the face up, 
dampen the spot, place a piece of 
white tissue paper over it, and hold 
it against the face of a moderately 
hot iron. When almost dry carefully 
place the garment on an ironing board 



242 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



or table and give one or two good 
thumps with the iron. 

Handing: White Goods and Deli- 
cate Fabrics. — ^When mending white 
goods, the piece with which you mend 
should be so large that when the arti- 
cle is washed the patch will not tear 
out. 

A good way to make a neat job is 
to slip the goods to be mended over 
an embroidery hoop to hold it firm. 
This will enable you to do the work 
very neatly and quickly. 

To Mend Moth-eaten Garments. — 
When a silk or woolen garment is 
badly moth-eaten it is not always pos- 
sible to darn the hole with raveUngs 
from the fabric. In such cases place 
a small patch of the material under 
the hole and darn carefully around 
the edges of the hole on the right side 
with ravelings. Then press with a 
moderately hot iron, putting first a 
damp cloth and then a piece of dry 
tissue paper between the cloth and the 
iron. 

Waste Silk. — The loose ends of 
spool silk are excellent for mending 
and may be placed in a little bag by 
the workbox. 

Darning by Machine. — Baste a 
piece of net on the wrong side of the 
garment to be mended. Cut a square 
or oblong hole. Then with No. 100 
thread on the machine sew back and 
forth, being careful that the rows of 
stitching come very close together. 
Never take the needle out of the 
goods. After stitching one way across 
the hole, stitch in the contrary direc- 
tion, always following the weave of 
the material. 

Mending Men's and Boys' Clothes. 
— It is a very difficult task to mend 
men's outside garments so that the 
darns will not deface them. First, 
place the mending scrap smoothly un- 
der the three-cornered or other hole 
to be mended. Then thread a needle 
with silk thread the same shade as 
the goods, insert it half an inch from 
the tear, and draw edgewise through 
the thickness of the cloth about half 
an inch on the other side, thus draw- 
ing the edges together. Then put the 



needle in the same hole from which it 
has just been brought out, turn it a 
little, and pass through the cloth so 
as to bring iC out half an inch on the 
other side of the tear. If the cloth is 
rather heavy, it is possible to avoid 
having the thread come to the surface, 
except when the needle is brought 
through to turn. So continue and 
thus make an invisible darn. 

When this is done place a wet cloth 
over the goods and press with a hot 
iron. Follow with a dry cloth. Do 
not allow the iron to stay on it imtil 
the first cloth is entirely dry. This 
prevents the mended spot having a 
shiny appearance. 

Boys' Trousers. — Boys' trousers 
may be quickly mended with gum tis- 
sue. If every mother knew the value 
of this tissue she would save herself 
much work by using it, and would 
have the satisfaction of always seeing 
a neat mend. Boys' trousers may also 
be mended on the machine after the 
fashion mentioned in " Mending on 
the Machine," first being careful to 
baste a strong piece of material 
smoothly under the thin places. Fine 
thread should be used the same shade 
as the goods for this purpose. The 
stitch should be rather short. 

Silk Dresses. — ^When the sleeves of a 
silk dress become thin it will last much 
longer if they are ripped out and new 
ones put in. It is an advantage, also, 
to treat worn breadths of the skirt 
in the same way. 

Mending Fringe. — Torn fringe may 
be renewed by taking a piece of card- 
board and stiff paper as wide and as 
long as the fringe. Wind suitable 
thread evenly and closely around the 
cardboard, then paste this along the 
edge of the article in place of the 
worn fringe and stitch on by ma- 
chine. If one strip of cardboard is 
insufficient make more strips and 
paste them close together. The card- 
board may be torn out when fin- 
ished, leaving the thread to form the 
fringe. 

Mending lace. — Crochet a long, 
loose chain or buttonhole stitch along 
the worn edges of the lace with thread 



SEWING AND MENDING DAY 



243 



to match its quality and color. For 
cream lace use unbleached linen thread, 
or tint the spool by dipping it in 
strong coffee. 

Mending Waists. — It is not neces- 
sary to discard a lingerie waist be- 
cause the trimming has given way. 
Draw the torn pieces together first, 
then baste a piece of white wash net 
under the entire yoke and machine 
stitch with very fine thread. Cut away 
the surplus net, allowing a small mar- 
gin near the stitching to prevent pull- 
ing out when latmdered. 

Sleeves. — The worn seams of sleeves 
may be strengthened by buttonholing 
over them with darning silk the color 
of the waist. This comes on spools 
the same as ordinary sewing silk, but 
is softer and may be split. 

Uending Corsets. — The nicest way 
to mend a broken corset is to bind 
where it may be broken with a small 
piece of chamois skin. 

Or, when the waist begins to wear 
through, it may be mended neatly on 
the machine. " Hand patches " al- 
ways look clumsy, but strips of cloth 
may be stitched on it, doubling over 
the worn places without in the least 
marring the garment. Stitch the strips 
the full length of the casings, and 
they will not only serve their special 
purpose, but will add months to the 
wear of the corset 

Uending Gloves. — To mend gloves 
neatly if they are torn or ripped, first 
buttonhole stitch around the rent, not 
so close as in a buttonhole; then over- 
cast, taking up the threads of the 
buttonhole on the edge and draw the 
edges carefully together. 

Or holes as well as rips in gloves 
may be mended in the same way also, 
with this difference: after buttonhol-' 
ing around the rent, gradually close 
up the hole by buttonholing inside 
of the first row of buttonholing. When 
the hole finally becomes filled you 
have a tiny circle of embroidery made 
with thread to match the gloves. Thus 
what was an unsightly hole becomes 
a neat and attractive embroidered 
spot upon the glove. 

Or the gloves may be mended with 



a piece of court plaster moistened and 
pasted on the wrong side. Be care- 
ful to cut off the corners of the plas- 
ter and slit its edges in order to make 
it fit the part of the glove to be 
mended. 

Thread for Mending Gloves. — In- 
stead of mending gloves with sUk to 
match them as is the usual custom, l 
try good cotton thread the color of I 
the gloves. You will find it will not 
be so noticeable as silk thread. 

Mending Skirts. — The part of a 
skirt which needs most constant at- 
tention and repair is, perhaps, the 
bottom. A skirt may catch on the 
heels, tearing off the braid and part 
of the goods, or the edges may be- 
come worn, or the braid itself become 
frayed. 

Skirt Bindings. — There are a num- 
ber of ways to overcome the untidy 
appearance of a skirt with worn edges. 
One good way is, when the edge be- 
comes frayed, to sew skirt protector 
upon it. The hem is not necessary as 
the worn edges unite with those of 
the binding. 

Or, when the skirt braid has be- 
come worn on the edge, it may be 
ripped off and reversed, turning the 
worn part to the top and the fresh 
edge to the bottom of the skirt. After 
pressing your skirt under a damp 
cloth you wUl find you have a neat 
finish, and one braid will thus give 
the wear of two. 

Or the hem may be turned up and 
stitched down outside instead of on 
the inside. 

Mending Stockings. — A woman may 
be an adept at mending coats, trou- 
sers, and dresses, and indeed almost 
every garment worn by her family, 
and yet be unable to mend stockings 
so that they wUl not torment tender 
feet. It is a great art to be able to 
mend stockings neatly. There are al- 
most as many ways of filling up the 
holes as there are colors of stockings, 
and each one may be more or less 
comfortable if only a little care is 
taken in sewing the rent, putting in 
place the patch, or filling the hole 
with thread. 



244 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVEEIES 



To Darn Stockings on a Sewing 
Kachine. — Mending stockings on a 
sewing machine saves time greatly, 
but is a very difficult task to perform. 
One of the simplest ways of doing so 
is to stretch the stocking tightly over 
two small embroidery hoops, being 
careful to have the hole as near the 
center as possible. Then cut away the 
ragged edges with sharp scissors. Re- 
move the presser foot of the machine 
and place the hole under the needle. 
Then stitch back and forth, as in the 
case of darning fabrics on the ma- 
chine. If care is taken the darn is 
much neater and smoother and far 
more quickly done than any other. 
Sewing thread may be used, but fine 
darning cotton is preferable. The 
hoops may be either metal or common 
embroidery hoops. 

To Hand Stockings by Hand. — If 
the hole is large, a convenient way is 
to baste carefully over the hole on 
the wrong side a piece of coarse net, 
then darn back and forth, taking your 
stitches in and out of the net, yet 
darn as close as ordinarily. The net 
acts as a stay to the soft darning 
thread. 

Or, if the hole is large, run a thread 
all around it first, and draw it up 
somewhat, but of course not enough 
to pucker. The hole is not only made 
smaller by this operation, but the darn 
is strengthened. 

Mending Stockings with a Crochet 
Needle. — The most expert darn, which 
requires the greatest skill and is also 
the easiest on the feet, is to fasten 
to the stitches that have become bro- 
ken a single strand of darning thread 
to match the thread of which the 
stocking is woven. Then crochet a 
smooth chain of sufficient length to 
reach across the opening, and fasten 
in the broken thread on the opposite 
side of the hole. Continue this proc- 
ess back and forth each time, catch- 
ing the thread in the chain already 
made. When the hole is flUed you 
have a surface as smooth as the orig- 
inal fabric of the stocking itself. 

Darning Woolen Stockings. — When 
darning a woolen stocking it is well 



to go over the break the first time 
with coarse cotton or sewing silk. 
Then make a coarse layer of good 
woolen yarn; this insures a smooth 
and substantial darn. 

Darning with Crechet Stitch. — An- 
other method, which is not quite so 
expert nor so satisfactory in the mat- 
ter of comfort, is to first cut away 
the worn edges of the hole until you 
reach strong material. Then, with 
wool or cotton of suitable weight 
crochet round the edge, putting 
the hook through the material. Con- 
tinue this process round and round, 
each time narrowing to give the 
proper shape, until the opening is 
closed. 

Darning Thread. — When darning 
black stockings use silkatine, as it is 
more durable than yarn. This thread 
is also best for fancy colored stock- 
ings, as it is easier to match the color 
of the stocking and makes a more 
durable darn. 

Or use fancy crochet cotton, which 
is not quite so expensive as the regu- 
lar darning cotton and makes a, very 
good darn. 

Or use black sUk, which comes for 
the purpose and makes the neatest 
darn for black stockings. 

Darning Ball. — The darning ball, 
which may be purchased at any de- 
partment store, is a white or black 
china egg; but there are many home 
devices which are found in many cases 
far more satisfactory. For instance, 
in the country where gourds are grown 
nothing is better, as they are number- 
less in shape and size. 

RENOVATIUG 

Almost always the garment which 
is to be mended requires more or less 
renovation before it is ready for serv- 
ice again. In the case of cotton fab- 
rics the laundry does the work. In 
silks, woolens, or velvets a deft hand 
and cleansing fluid, a damp cloth and 
an iron are necessary. 

To Kestore the Gloss Finish on 
Woolen Goods. — First, brush the cloth 
the way of the weave with a brurfi 



SEWING AND MENDING DAY 



245 



dipped in weak gum water. Then 
carefully place over it a sheet of paper 
or a piece of cloth, allowing no wrin- 
kles either in the cloth or the cover- 
ing, and put it under a weight or in 
a screw press until dry. 

To Restore Creased Velvet. — ^Velvet 
creases badly when folded for trim- 
ming, and cannot be used again until 
the creases are removed. A simple 
way to do this is to procure a wide 
piece of heavy cardboard and stretch 
the velvet tightly upon it, overlapping 
as little as possible. Put the card- 
board in a paper bag, paste the top 
to keep out the dust, set it on the 
shelf above the kitchen range, and let 
it remain there until the heat raises 
the pile. 

Or wet a cloth and lay it on a hot 
iron, holding the velvet over the steam 
which rises. 

Or stretch the velvet until it is taut 
on a light wooden frame made, if 
possible, the size of the piece to be 
renovated and hold it over the steam 
of a boiling kettle. This last proc- 
ess has, perhaps, the most durable 
effect. 

To Raise the Nap on Cloth. — The 
article should be well cleaned, after 
which soak it in cold water for half 
an hour, put it on a board, and rub 
the threadbare parts with a hatter's 
card filled with flocks or a teasel 
brush. A prickly thistle will answer 
the same purpose. When the nap is 
raised, lay it the right way and hang 
the garment up to dry. In renova- 
ting clothes the elbows, collars, and 
cuffs are often so worn as to make 
the garment look shabby. By the 
above process it may be completely 
rej uvenated. 

To Clean a JVhite Hackintosh. — A 
white mackintosh is very easily soiled 
and may be cleaned with soap and 
water. But if it is extremely dirty a 
soft scrubbing brush with yellow soap 
may be used. Rub on both sides until 
the dirt is removed, then dip in three 
or four waters until the soap is rinsed 
off and hang in the air without wring- 
ing. Mud stains around the bottom 
are very difficult to remove and the 



garment may have to be sent to a 
cleaner. But do not use benzine or 
gasoline, ^s they will dissolve the rub- 
ber. 

Trimmings. — On renovation day 
trimmings also come in for their share 
of attention. 

To Stiffen Silk for Trimmings. — To 
renovate a piece of silk that has lost 
its stiffness, sponge the surface with 
a weak solution of gum arable, or with 
equal parts of ale and water. To 
prevent its becoming glossy iron while 
damp on the wrong side. 

MAKING OVER 

To Iiengthen a Skirt. — To make 
a girl's wash skirts and petticoats 
keep pace with her rapid growth, 
have on hand a few yards of in- 
sertion. If this is too expensive or 
is unsuitable, then it is possible to 
make an attractive band by taking 
a strip an inch to two inches wide of 
any plain cotton goods, or, if it is a 
colored skirt to be lengthened, then a 
strip to match the skirt. Hem on each 
side and ornament with rows of feath- 
er stitching, with a row of French 
knots through the middle. For a plain 
skirt cut about one inch above the 
hem, placing this narrow band of in- 
sertion or made strip between. Two 
or more such bands may be employed 
if desired or necessary. If it be a 
trimmed or tucked skirt, cut off above 
the tucks to allow for a seam and the 
width of the tuck and insert bands. 

Or make a new top and sew above 
the tucks. Take up the tuck on the 
right side with the seam on the folded 
edge and stitch to match the other 
tucks. 

To Hake Over Sleeves. — One season 
it becomes necessary to shorten the 
sleeves, another to lengthen them. If 
the sleeves are to be made short, a 
good way is to cut out a piece just 
above the elbow. Hide the seam by 
a fold that resembles a tuck. Make 
two or more tucks, and you have a 
pretty sleeve with much less trouble 
than removing them from the shoul- 
ders. 



246 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



Aprons. — The first place a work 
apron gives way is near tlie waist 
binding, because of the constant rub- 
bing against the table. When mak- 
ing a work apron, if a double thick- 
ness is placed underneath in front 
from the waist binding down about 
12 inches and stitched at the lower 
edge, the apron will last as long 
again. 

Or, if this is not done and the apron 
becomes thin, cut it in half through 
the middle, turn it end for end, and 
stitch the two outer edges together, 
making a seam down the front; face 
the worn edges, which now become the 
outer edges, stitch what was hereto- 
fore the bottom in the band, and you 
have an apron rehabilitated. 

Collars. — A coat may have found 
its way to the sewing room for mend- 
ing day. The buttons have been sewed 
on, the rents mended, and still the 
coUar remains creased. A very simple 
process wiU add the finishing touch 
and make it worth the time it takes. 
Take a piece of very thin muslin, 
brush it lightly with white of egg, 
and lay it over the creases on the 
wrong side. Press lightly with a warm 
iron, and the creases will disappear. 
The collar will stand stiffer than was 
the original canvas. 

Hints for Kaking Over. — In mak- 
ing over garments much depends on 
care in renovating the material. First 
rip the garment entirely apart, allow- 
img no two pieces to remain joined. 
Then pick out every thread carefully. 
Lay each piece separately on a table 
and brush carefully. 

If there are stains or spots be sure 
that they are removed. The cleaning 
must be thorough or the fact that the 
article is made over wiU be very ap- 
parent. 

If the material is faded have it 
dyed. Black dresses that are not 
worn, but faded, will look like new 
after they have been dipped in dye. 
When redyeing an article, put the new 
pieces of the material along with the 
old in the dye. Remember that any 
color will take black dye. 

It often happens that goods are 



faded on one side, but the color is 
perfectly fresh on the other. If the 
weave is such that the reverse side 
may be used, turn the goods and make 
them up with the fresh side out. 

Some goods, such as cashmere and 
silk, may be put in the tub and washed 
in the usual way, being careful, of 
course, to thoroughly dust them 
first. They should be ironed on the 
wrong side before they are dry with 
an iron not too hot, and pressed imtil 
dry. 

Wheat bran put in the water in 
which you wash black goods greatly 
improves them. 

Sometimes, when using ammonia to 
get out grease, the color is taken out. 
This you can restore by applying care- 
fully a weak solution of oxalic acid 
and water. Stop as soon as the color 
returns. 

Light-colored goods and figured 
fabrics may be sponged with warm 
water, alcohol, or gasoline. Very light 
colors should be sponged on the wrong 
side of the goods, taking care that 
every fiber is thoroughly dampened. 
Go over every piece separately and 
carefully. 

Decide the style of garment you 
wish to fashion of your pieces, get a 
pattern, and lay it carefully on your 
goods to see if you have a sufficient 
quantity, and if not, ascertain how 
much material of another kind you 
vrill require, and how far trimming 
will go to make up the deficiency in 
goods. You may find in cutting that 
a considerable amount of piecing is 
required. Then cut your garment as 
completely out of the goods as is pos- 
sible, fit your piecings on to the pat- 
tern, pin them together, and lay them 
aside. Stitch and press all the piec- 
ings, and proceed as with a new 
garment. Arrange the trimming as 
far as possible so that it will cover 
the necessary piecings and tucks. 
When the garment is finished it will 
be easy enough to see just what style 
of trimming will be necessary to cover 
deficiencies. 

At the beginning of the spring sew- 
ing, the old garments that have accu- 



SEWING AND MENDING DAY 



247 



mulated may be studied with a. view 
to their further usefulness, and so 
with every other season. You may 
find numerous old linen garments 
that may do service in the following 
ways: 

Uses of a Blue Linen Dress. — This 
garment may be stout and good but 
faded in streaks or out of style. Rip 
it to pieces, wash it, and bleach it in 
the sunshine until it is all one shade. 
Then dye it a pretty light blue. The 
material may then be used for a shirt 
waist or a child's dress. Embroidered 
linen is always in good taste, and thus 
handsome garments may be made of 
old dresses. 

Uses of a Brown Linen Dress. — ^An 
old brown linen dress can also be used 
to make shirt waists, simmier trousers 
for boys, or blouses for either boys or 
girls. 

Making Over — ^Useful Hints. — Here 
are some useful hints in making over 
that wiU prove equally valuable for 
new goods: 

Morning and Kitchen Dresses. — It 
is a good idea when buying morning 
and kitchen dresses to select first an 
inconspicuous pattern; secondly, to 
buy enough for two dresses. Thus 
when they begin to show wear you 
will have plenty of material worn 
alike to make one respectable dress, 
and perhaps two aprons. 

Where tiiere is a large family the 
summer sewing may be greatly ex- 
pedited by making a list of the mem- 
bers of the family to be provided for, 
and under each name adding two lists: 
what each one has and what each re- 
quires to complete the summer ward- 
robe. This will often save both time 
and money. 

Old Collars for Canvas. — If one does 
not happen to have canvas with which 
to stiffen revers, she will find the old 
linen collars and cuffs that have been 
cast off by the men of the family a 
good substitute for canvas. They 
must be first washed, being carefiil 
not to remove all the starch, and then 
ironed. Many who have used this sub- 
stitute do not care to retuza to the 
use of canvas. 



FANCY WOBK 

Some knowledge of fancy work aids, 
a woman very materially from a dec- 
orative as well as an economical stand- 
point. The woman who knows how to 
make and use fancy work may dress 
well and inexpensively. 

Homemade Stamping Patterns. — 
Perforated patterns can be easily 
made in the following manner: Draw 
the pattern on butter paper. You can 
trace on that more easily than on tis- 
sue paper. Then unthread the needle 
of the sewing machine, stitch all the 
lines, and you have the pattern as 
perfect as any of the purchased ones. 
Many prefer this to the use of carbon 
paper. 

To Transfer Embroidery Designs. 
— To trace the pattern of some article 
which has been already embroidered 
take a piece of cloth you wish to have 
the design upon, lay it smoothly on a 
well-padded ironing board, dampen 
the embroidery design thoroughly, and 
place it smoothly on linen or cloth 
right side down. With a thin cloth 
placed over it aU, press firmly until 
dry. When the piece is removed the 
impression will be on the cloth in per- 
fection. Trace the outlines with a 
pencil and you have your design.. 

To Applique Embroidery. — It is 
possible to make a garment very hand- 
some if one understands the art of 
appliqu6. The wise woman whose 
means are limited will save every mite 
of embroidery she possesses — ^the em- 
broidered corners of handkerchiefs, 
embroidered turn-overs, medallions in 
her fancy waists, and the hundred and 
one little odds and ends that from 
time to time find their way into her 
wardrobe. When the garment is worn, 
carefully remove the embroidered 
parts with very sharp scissors. Lay 
them away in a box for future use. 
If you desire an embroidered shirt 
waist or corset cover, turn to this box 
of odds and ends and there will be 
found perhaps a rosebud, the ten- 
drils of a vine, a few leaves, or the 
like. Place them carefully upon a 
new or else an unworn piece of goods, 



248 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



fashioning out of the many bits a 
pleasing design. Baste the bits of 
embroidery upon the goods with ex- 
ceeding care, then with fine thread 
carefully buttonhole the embroidery 
down upon the fabric. In many cases 
the Kensington embroidery stitch may 
be employed. Where the places are 
not perfectly joined, a vine of one's 
own handiwork may be inserted. You 
will be surprised when the work is 
finished at the daintiness of the gar- 
ment. 

Embroidery Silk. — There are many 
devices for keeping embroidery silk. 
A very simple and convenient one is 
a box in which gentlemen's fine ties 
are sold singly. It is just the right 
length and size to accommodate the 
holders. 

Hemstitching. — Always use a short 
needle in hemstitching. When hem- 
stitching on hnen the thread may be 
easily drawn if a yardstick is laid 
along a straight line, being careful to 
insure the proper margin on the outer 
edge of the piece. If a piece of hard 
white soap is rubbed along the linen, 
the threads may be drawn with ease. 

Hemstitching on the Sewing Ma- 
chine. — ^Draw the threads as usual. 
Instead of basting the hem j ust where 
the threads are drawn, baste it so that 
the stitch will come a little above the 
middle of the open work. The fine- 
ness or coarseness of hemstitching is 
regulated by a short or long stitch. 

Eyelet Embroidery. — An orange 
stick, such as is used for manicuring 
the nails, may be used as a substitute 
for the stiletto when making holes for 
embroidery. It is more satisfactory 
than the points of scissors, which 
often make the holes irregular. 

To Prepare Linen for Embroider- 
ing. — If new linen must be embroid- 
ered without being shrunk, it will be 
much easier if you first rub it over 
with fine white soap. The threads are 
thus prevented from cracking. 

Working Initials. — If handkerchiefs 
or napkins are to have embroidered 
initials, baste the corners of four of 
them together. Then slip the em- 
broidery rings in place. Thus four 



initials can be worked without chang- 
ing the rings. 

Fancy Work that Has Become 
Drawn. — When fancy work has be- 
come drawn in working, dip a cloth 
in cold water, wring it out, and lay 
it on a wooden table. Lay the worked 
piece over this, pinning it at intervals 
of half an inch until not a pucker re- 
mains. Leave this for several hours, 
or over night,-and when the pins are 
removed the drawn appearance will 
have disappeared. 

To Cut Insertion. — Place the at- 
tachment next to the quilter on the 
sewing machine and set on the edge 
of the insertion close to the work. 
Then adj ust for the margin to be left. 
Place the needle just where the inser- 
tion is to be cut. With unthreaded 
needle stitch the entire length. Then 
follow the lines of the holes in cut- 
ting. 

Sewing Insertion on Garments. — 
When insertion is to be sewed on a 
straight strip, a very good way is to 
baste the lace or embroidery in the 
straight edge of the goods. If lace, 
allow enough of the goods to form a 
hem. If embroidery, just allow a 
seam, and stitch close to the cord of 
the embroidery or right on the edge 
of the lace. Then turn that which has 
been allowed for the hem, and stitch. 
This makes a first-class imitation of 
trimming that has been whipped in, 
and takes much less time. 

Embroidery Edging for Underwear. 
— If imderwear is to be trimmed with 
embroidery, the latter may be strength- 
ened and made more durable by stitch- 
ing around the scallops before putting 
the embroidery on the garment. Use 
a loose tension to avoid splitting be- 
tween the scallops. 

Ripping. — Garments for growing 
children have constantly to be made 
over — sleeves to be lengthened, new 
sleeves to be made, hems let out of 
skirts, and the like. An old-fashioned 
chain-stitch machine can be purchased 
for a song and will prove excellent 
for stitching up these particular 
seams; then when the garment is to 
be taken apart a child can rip it. 



SEWING AND MENDING DAY 



249 



Nothing is better for ripping than 
the thin blade of a razor. If the men 
of the house shave themselves, old 
razors are occasionally discarded and 
are excellent for ripping. 

Cutting. — Time may be saved by 
cutting tv/o corresponding pieces of 
an apron. This avoids pinning the 
pattern to each piece separately. To 
mark the tucks, place a piece of im- 
pression paper under the two pieces 
of material. Then with a common 
lead pencil mark aU the perforations. 
Thus, the above pieces are marked ex- 



actly alike, and half the time has been 
saved. 

Cutting Bias Folds. — It is a good 
plan to turn the material over fre- 
quently to make sure that it is kept 
quite bias. Any deviation therefrom 
will cause the threads to twist when 
sewing the folds on the garment. 

Cutting Silk. — If silk is thin and 
slippery it may be placed between 
sheets of thin paper before the pat- 
tern is laid on. Cut through the paper 
and material together, and there will 
be little fraying. 



CHAPTER IX 

SWEEPING DAY 

UTENSILS FOR SWEEPING— DUST AND DUSTING— HABD-WOOD 
FLOOBS— RUGS— MATTING— OILCLOTH AND LINOLEUM 



One day in the week, usually Fri- 
day, is set apart as sweeping day. 
At the top of the house, in the attic 
stairway, keep cleaning rags, brush, 
soap, dusters, and broom. Have a 
wastebasket in each of the rooms to 
receive bits of paper, rags, Uat, 
burnt matches, and the like. Com- 
mence at the top of the house and 
clean each room as you go. Take up 
the dust from each room and put it 
in a tin bucket or other deep recep- 
tacle so that it will not be blown 
about. Never sweep the dirt from 
one room to another, and thence down 
the stairway to the front hall. This 
method covers the door» lintels, win- 
dow casings, and high shelves with a 
thick coating of dust which is blown 
about the room with every passing 
breeze. 

Sweep the stairs with a short-han- 
dled brush or stiff whisk broom, hold- 
ing a dust pan to catch the dust at 
each step. Triangular blocks, or brass 
fixtures made for this purpose, tacked 
into the corners of the stairways will 
assist in keeping them clean by pre- 
venting dust from acciunulating. 

After a room has been swept, open 
one or more viondows, if possible, be- 
fore beginning to dust. 

UIEXSIIS rOS SW£EFIir& 

Carpet Sweeper. — The ideal method 
of sweeping is by means of a carpet 
sweeper. This goes over the surface 
of the carpet with a light and even 
pressure, and takes up all dust and 
dirt with the least possible friction 
and consequent wear upon the carpet. 



and raises practically no dust at all. 
It saves strength and time, and prob- 
ably saves money by outwearing the 
brooms that could be purchased for 




" The Ideal Method of Sweeping." 

the same price. Hence a good carpet 
sweeper may be regarded as a neces- 
sity rather than a luxury in every 
household. 

How to Sweep. — ^The old-fashioned 
brooms, however, are still commonly 
used, and are needed for some pur- 
poses in every household. To sweep 
well with a broom is an art that calls 
for quite a little skill and intelli- 
gence. There are wrong ways in 
sweeping as well as the right way, and 
the former are perhaps more often 
practiced than the latter. 



250 



SWEEPING DAY 



251 



It is wrong to lean on the broom, 
or dig into the carpet with great force, 
as if trying to dig down and get the 
dirt out of it. This cannot be done 
except by taking up the carpet and 
beating it. All the dust and dirt that 
can be removed is that which lies on 
the surface. 

It is wrong to push the broom for- 
ward so as to drive a cloud of dust 
into the air. 

It is wrong to sweep the whole 
length of the room toward the door 
in order to sweep the dirt into the 
next room. TWs carries the dirt over 
a larger surface of carpet than is nec- 
essary. 

It is wrong to sweep always on one 
side of a broom so that it will get 
lopsided and have to be thrown away. 

The right way to use a broom is to 
keep the handle always inclining for- 
ward and never allow it to come to 
the perpendicular; much less incline 
backward. The stroke should be rath- 
er long, the sweeper standing on the 
soiled portion of the carpet, reaching 
back, and drawing the dust and dirt 
forward as if pulling or dragging it 
over the surface. A skUlful sweeper 
will lift the broom ' before it be- 
comes perpendicular so as not to 
raise the slightest dust, and will tap 
it gently to shake the dirt out of 
it before reaching back for another 
stroke. 

Begin in one corner, and work along 
the crack between the baseboard and 
carpet, as this is where moths and car- 
pet bugs do their most destructive 
work. Work around the room, sweep- 
ing toward the center, and when that 
has been reached take up the dust 
with pan and brush. It is obvious that 
this process moves the dirt over a 
smaller surface than sweeping toward 
one of the doors. The practice of 
sweeping the dirt from one room into 
another, even if the latter room be 
the kitchen, is certainly inadvisable. 
Both brooms and carpets will wear 
much longer if sweeping is done in 
proper fashion, and the dust in furni- 
ture, draperies, and bric-a-brac will be 
reduced to a minimum. 



Sweeping. — Before sweeping dip the 
broom in hot soapsuds, and have at 
hand a pailful of soapsuds in which 
to rinse the broom when it becomes 
dusty. Squeeze out the water so that 
the broom is damp but not wet. This 
practice toughens the straw, makes 
the broom last much longer, and soft- 
ens it so that it does not cut the car- 
pet. A damp broom also takes up the 
dirt better than a dry one and pre- 
vents the dust from rising in the air. 

To prevent dust when sweeping 
wet a newspaper, tear it in small 
pieces, and scatter them over the car- 
pet. Squeeze the paper so that it will 
not drip. 

Or sprinkle the carpet with moist 
tea leaves, which may be saved daily 
for this purpose. 

If a room is heated by hot air, a 
good deal of dust will come up through 
the register. To prevent this, place 
a fine wire screen or two or three 
thicknesses of cloth under the regis- 
ter, so that the hot air will be screened 
in passing through. When shaking 
down the furnace or removing the 
ashes sprinkle wet sawdust over the 
ashes. This will prevent filling the 
house with dust. When upholstered 
furniture, draperies, carpets, and Ori- 
ental rugs require dusting, lay over 
them large pieces of cheese cloth or 
outing flannel wrung out of cold 
water, and beat them with a stick or 
small carpet beater. As the dust arises 
it will adhere to the wet cloths, and 
these can be rinsed occasionally. 

To Select Brooms. — Select a broom 
of light-green color and fine straw. 
It wears longer and gathers fine dirt 
that coarse straw would pass by. 
Choose a flat broom, not a round one. 
Shake the broom, and choose one which 
is not loose, otherwise the straw will 
fall out. Be sure that there is no stalk 
below the thread. 

Care of Brooms. — Broom straw when 
dry is brittle and easily broken. It 
is also stiff and wears the carpets. 
Hence before using a new broom set 
it in a pail of boiling suds and let it 
stand until the water is cold. Hang 
it out of doors to dry. 



252 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



When not in use a broom should al- 
ways be hung upside down so that the 
straws will fall apart. This helps to 
keep it in shape. Have different 
brooms for different purposes. Use the 
newest for the finest carpets, the next 
older broom for kitchen use, and the 
oldest broom for the pavement and 
other rough places. When through 
sweeping pick all the lint from the 
broom, shake the dust out of it, and 
rinse in hot water before hanging it 
up. 

Make a pocket in which to hang the 
broom upside down. 

Or put two large clothes hooks fac- 
ing each other, or two nails, and hang 
the head of the broom between these. 

Or drive nails through two large 
spools to protect the straw. 

Or put up a ring on the wall and 
thrust the broom handle through this. 

Keep the broom in a dry, cool place, 
away from rats or mice. Too much 
heat makes it brittle, and rats and 
mice will gnaw it when they can. Af- 
ter a time the ends of a broom split 
and become sharp, and the broom gets 
out of shape. Wet it in hot suds, cut 
the split and broken ends straight 
across, and press it between weights 
to restore it to shape. A new broom 
sweeps clean because the straws are 
straight and the broom is square, hence 
a broom thus treated wUl sweep like 
new. When sweeping, sweep first with 
one side of the broom, then with the 
other, else it will get one-sided and 
have to be thrown away. 

Care of Carpet Sweepers. — The car- 
pet sweeper should be . emptied every 
sweeping day, and never put away full 
of dirt. It may be opened over a 
newspaper. The brush should be tak- 
en out and freed from dust and lint 
with the fingers or a coarse comb, 
rinsed in soapsuds, and dried before 
being replaced. 

When the rubber tires on the wheels 
become worn they may not assist the 
brush to revolve with sufficient strength 
to do good work. New tires may be 
obtained from the manufacturers, or 
thick rubber bands purchased from a 
stationer or rubber-goods dealer may 



be substituted. Remove the old tires 
and adjust the new ones with glue or 
cement. New brushes may be ob- 
tained from the manufacturer, and 
with care a good carpet sweeper 
should last a lifetime. 

A toy carpet sweeper is a great 
convenience, as it may be kept at hand 
or easUy carried from place to place. 
In the sewing room it is useful to 
catch all ravelings and smaU pieces 
from the floor without stooping. Tliis 
may be done without rising from the 
chair. In the nursery it takes all bits 
of paper torn by children, about the 
dining-room table it catches crumbs, 
and aU with little effort and without 
the need of using or even possessing 
a large-sized sweeper. The toy sweep- 
er costs less than half a doUar and 
will save its price many times over. 

DUST AND DUSTING 

Dust is defined by the Century 
Dictionary as " earth or other matter 
in fine dry particles so attenuated 
that they can be raised and carried 
by the wind." The particles of earth 
and other mineral substances con- 
tained in dust are troublesome, but 
not especially harmful. In addition 
to this, dust contains three sorts of 
spores or germs, i. e., molds, yeasts, 
and bacteria. All of these are alive, 
or capable of life, and under suitable 
conditions multiply rapidly. They 
are invisible except imder the micro- 
scope, and are exceedingly numerous. 
The conditions most favorable to 
their growth are darkness, warmth, 
and moisture. Direct sunlight kills 
them, and in the absence of moisture, 
they do not usually multiply. 

All of these germs produce minute 
plant or vegetable organisms of 
which common mold or " mildew " 
and the yeast used in raising bread 
are familiar examples. A visible il- 
lustration of the spores or germs, 
that are the seeds of plants of this 
sort, is found in the common puff- 
ball or " smoke " ball, so familiar to 
country children. When broken, the 
contents escape as a cloud of dust. 



SWEEPING DAY 



253 



These are the spores or seeds of the 
plant. The air is fiill of similar 
spores or germs, and while many of 
these are not harmful, others are the 
agents of decay and a few are the 
germs of contagious diseases. These 
are called bacteria. Their natureil 
home is in moist soil. Thus they 
multiply rapidly in the soil of damp 
cellar floors, especially if decaying 
vegetable matter is present, and in 
the accumulation of dirt and grease 
beneath boarded-up sinks, and in the 
corners of rooms that are shut up 
and darkened. They are also very 
numerous about drains and cess- 
pools. They sometimes find their way 
into the body by means of drinking 
water or by accidental contact with 
the body when the skin is cut or 
scratched. But more frequently they 
are dislodged from some moist local- 
ity and become dry. Then they are 
caught up by every passing breeze, 
and float in the air as dust, whence 
they are taken into the mouth and 
lungs in breathing. 

The bacteria which cause disease 
find lodgment under certain condi- 
tions and grow in the body. They 
throw off in' the process of growth 
certain poisonous substances called 
toxins. And these toxins are what 
produce the symptoms and condi- 
tions present in such diseases, and 
eventually, in many cases, produce 
death. 

Spores or germs of mold that set- 
tle on carpets or other fabrics and on 
wood, books, or other objects. where 
moisture is present, produce a crop 
of tiny plants, well known imder the 
name of mildew. The yeast germs 
are less common and are relatively 
harmless. Knowledge of these facts 
emphasizes the dangers of dust, which 
may be avoided in three ways: by 
sterilization, by prevention, and by 
removal. 

Sterilization of Dust. — The most 
eflScient agent to sterilize dust, by 
killing germs that it contains, is di- 
rect sunlight. Like many other 
things that are plentiful and free, 
sunlight is not appreciated at its true 



value. In cities, buildings are crowd- 
ed so closely together as to shade 
one another, and in the country too 
frequently direct sunshine is cut off 
from dwelling houses by thick masses 
of evergreen and other trees, shrubs 
or vines. Formerly it was the custom 
in many localities to keep the parlor 
and spare chambers closed by shut 
doors and drawn blinds. And rooms 
are stiU too often darkened to pre- 
vent carpets and other fabrics from 
fading. Happily, a change for the 
better is already apparent. Hard- 
wood floors and Oriental rugs do not 
fade. It is much less customary than 
formerly to exclude light and air 
from spare rooms, to board up sinks 
and other plumbing, and otherwise 
to harbor breeding places for the 
germs of mildew, disease, and decay. 
In cities, boards of health are con- 
stantly studying these matters, and 
laws have been passed that tend to 
prevent unsanitary conditions. The 
resulting knowledge is being rapidly 
spread everywhere. And within re- 
cent years the death rate of most lo- 
calities has been greatly diminished. 
There is little doubt that many 
deaths have been due to conditions 
that could have been prevented by a. 
knowledge of the dust dangers. 

But in the presence of direct sun- 
shine, dust is rendered harmless. 
Hence choose furnishings that sun- 
shine wiU not harm, and admit the 
sunlight freely to all parts of the 
house. 

Preventing Dust. — A certain 
amount of dust, according to local 
conditions, is always floating in the 
outer air, and finds its way into 
dwellings through doors, windows, 
and other openings. This cannot 
usually be much lessened except by 
such means as oiling streets; sprin- 
kling streets, lawns, and gardens; the 
prevention of smoke and the like. 
But the amount of dust formed with- 
in doors by the wear of fabrics, fur- 
niture, woodwork, and other objects, 
can be much lessened by the selec- 
tion, when furnishing, of durable ar- 
ticles of all sorts, and by protecting 



254 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



floors, furniture, and other woodwork 
by suitable coatings of oil, wax, paint, 
or varnish. And, in addition, vari- 
ous means may be taken to prevent 
the distribution of dust when sweep- 
ing. 

Removing Dust. — The ordinary 
means of removing dust is by sweep- 
ing, and afterwards wiping all ex- 
posed surfaces by means of a damp 
cloth, chamois, or other suitable dust- 
er. Good ventilation is also valuable 
as ai means of removing dust, espe- 
cially if the intake is screened so that 
the fresh air is pure when admitted. 
Carpet sweepers are especially valu- 
able as dust removers. But the mod- 
ern vacuum cleaners may be regard- 
ed as ideal for this purpose. 

Vacuum Cleaners. — At present this 
method of cleaning is somewhat ex- 
pensive, and is confined to localities 
where electric or other power is 
available. It is to be hoped, how- 
ever, that vacuum-cleaning apparatus 
may be devised that can be run by 
cheap gasoline or alcohol motors at 
a price within the means of the aver- 
age family. These cleaners, by pro- 
ducing a vacuum, cause suction pow- 
erful enough to draw dust, dirt, and 
other small objects out of the fiber 
of carpets and hangings, and from 
the surface of woodwork, furniture, 
and other objects. The dust is taken 
in through a suitable mouthpiece 
provided with a handle with which to 
guide it as desired, and carried, to- 
gether with a current of air, through a 
tube into a receptacle containing wa- 
ter. This may afterwards be emptied, 
and all dust permanently removed 
from the premises. There is little 
doubt that some such means of clean- 
ing will eventually take the place of 
the broom and carpet sweeper in or- 
dinary households, and that thus the 
dust question will be finally and sat- 
isfactorily settled. 

Dusters. — ^The object of dusting is, 
or should be, to remove the dust per- 
manently from the room, and not 
merely to change its location from 
hangings, shelves, or furniture cover- 
ing, whence it will be stirred by every 



footstep and carried by the first breeze 
back to its former resting place. 

The old-fashioned feather duster is 
useful for moving the dust from one 
place to another, but for no other pur- 
pose. The feather duster doubtless 
owes its popularity to the long handle, 
which permits of dusting the lower 
parts of furniture without stooping, 
and also of dusting objects that would 
otherwise be out of reach. A substi- 
tute may be made on the same plan 
by using a short piece of broomstick, 
tiie handle of an old feather duster, 
or a child's broom, and fastening to 
the end with cord or wire in the 
same way that a wWsk broom is wired, 
a deep double ruffle made of any suit- 
able cloth and of any desired length 
and thickness. 

A duster made in this way will 
retain the dust better than a feath- 
er duster, and it can be shaken 
out of the window. Cheese cloth is 
perhaps the best material for this 
form of duster, but almost any soft 
fabric may be employed. 

Or hem squares of cheese cloth of 
any convenient size. 

Or use the tops of old cotton or 
silk hose, either men's or women's. 
Cut these down the seam and whip 
them together with a loose seam. 

Or for certain purposes, as dusting 
around baseboards, over windows, 
doors, and all woodwork that it is dif- 
ficult to reach with a cloth, use a com- 
mon dish mop. This is much superior 
to a feather duster, as it holds the 
dirt and can be easily cleaned. It wiU 
be improved for this purpose by wir- 
ing the upper end with a piece of 
wire taken from an old whisk broom. 

Chamois leather slightly dampened 
is perhaps the best kind of duster, es- 
pecially for polished furniture. 

To Dust. — Begin in one corner of 
the room and dust thoroughly as you 
go. Commence with the highest arti- 
cles, wiping but not brushing off the 
dust, the object being to cause all the 
dust to lodge on the cloth. 

Shake the duster frequently out of 
the window. After using it wash it 
and hang it up. 



SWEEPING DAY 



255 



Wing Dusters. — The wings of fowls, 
turkeys, geese, and ctiickens are use- 
ful to dig out tiie corners in washing 
windows, and also as brushes about 
the stove and hearth. Dip the bony 
ends in a bichloride solution to keep 
out moths and insects. Do not leave 
them where the cat can chew them. 

To freshen Carpets. — Before sweep- 
ing, scatter dry salt over the carpet. 
It brightens the colors and checks the 
ravages of moths. 

Or, after sweeping, go over the car- 
pet lightly with a broom dipped into 
half a pailful of hot water to which 
two teaspoonfuls of ammonia have 
been added. This freshens the colors 
of the carpet. 

Or slightly moisten salt with kero- 
sene. Sprinkle the carpet and sweep 
thoroughly. The dust wiU not rise, 
but will be thoroughly taken up by 
the mixture. The kerosene wiU leave 
no greasy effect, the odor will soon 
pass off, and the carpet will be won- 
derfully freshened. Corn meal may 
be substituted for salt. The same 
treatment may be applied to matting 
with equally good resiJts. 

Smooth Floors. — Smooth floors of 
hard wood, oilcloth, linoleum, or mat- 
ting should not be swept in the usual 
way. Make a heavy canton or outing 
flannel bag with a draw string, large 
enough to hold the head of the broom. 
Or use for this purpose ticks that are 
becoming worn. Wring this bag out 
of hot water containing a little am- 
monia, sUp the broom head into it, 
and draw the puckering string tight 
about the handle. This takes up all 
dust, lint, and bits of paper, and 
makes the room much fresher than 
ordinary sweeping. Cast-off flannel 
garments, such as nightshirts and the 
like, may be utilized in this manner. 

Or stitch together loosely old cot- 
ton hose, crazy-quilt fashion. 

HABD-WOOD FLOORS 

Finish for Hard-wood Floors. — 
Rub down a new floor with sandpa- 
per, and polish with pumice mois- 
tened with a little water. Wa^ clean. 



let dry, fill the nail holes with putty, 
and if the grain of the wood is open, 
apply a suitable fiUer. Avoid a cheap 
filler, based on plaster of Paris and 
the like, as these are not durable. 
The best filler consists of ground 
quartz mixed with linseed oil about 
as thick as white-lead paint. The 
particles of quartz are angular and 
adhere to the grain of the wood. 
When nearly dry, or as soon as it be- 
gins to " flat," go over it with a cloth 
or other polisher, and wipe clean all 
that will come off. Let stand a day 
or two and polish lightly with the 
finest grade of sandpaper. Wipe off 
the dust with a soft cloth and follow 
with two coats of the best quality of 
pure shellac. Avoid cheap shellac, as 
it is much less durable. This gives 
a high gloss. But if a dull finish is 
required, the shellac may be rubbed 
down by means of a piece of felt 
tacked over a flat surface as a block 
of wood, with pumice stone mois- 
tened with cold-drawn linseed oil or 
olive oil. 

Or to reflnish a hard-wood floor 
that has become defaced by age or 
wear, remove the previous finish by 
washing the floor with a strong solu- 
tion of sal soda, or, if necessary, caus- 
tic potash or soda lye. Or if this 
does not remove the spots, apply 
turpentine. After the wood has been 
perfectly cleaned, proceed as above. 

Wax for Hard-wood Floors. — Shel- 
lac alone makes a tough and dura- 
ble finish, but on account of its high 
gloss it readily mars and scratches. 
And these defects are very appar- 
ent. Moreover, a shellac surface can- 
not be touched up in spots because 
the brush marks will show. When 
defaced, it must be refinished all 
over. Hence it is customary to fol- 
low the shellac with a protective 
coat of wax. 

Or wood may be oiled with cold- 
drawn linseed or other clear fixed oU, 
and a coat of wax applied directly 
to the oiled surface without shellac. 
This last is the usual custom abroad. 

A suitable wax properly applied 
gives a hard, glossy surface, is not 



256 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



sticky, and does not rub off. Scratches 
or mars on any part of the surface 
can be waxed over at any time, and 
the whole surface can be repolished 
frequently with a weighted brush. 
Floor oils, unless rubbed and pol- 
ished with great care, tend to stain 
skirts, rugs, and draperies. Hence 
wax is the most satisfactory of all 
floor dressings. 

To Wax Floors. — Apply, by means 
of a flannel cloth, beeswax thinned 
with turpentine and rub down with a 
weighted brush. This is a hard wax 
and difficult to apply without turpen- 
tine. But the turpentine quickly 
evaporates, and the wax then forms a 
very durable coating. 

Or as a substitute for beeswax, use 
paraffin wax, which is cheaper, soft 
and easy to apply, but less durable. 
Paraffin is one of the petroleum 
products, and if not properly refined, 
tends to combine with the tannin of 
oak floors to form black petroleum 
stains, which are difficult to remove. 

Or fasten together four or more 
common red bricks. Lay one or more 
thicknesses of felt over the largest 
surface, surround the whole with 
flannel or other soft cloth, sew it on 
and attach an old broom handle with 
which to push or drag it over the 
floor. This is equally as effective as 
a weighted brush and costs nothing. 

Steel Wool for Waxed Floors. — 
To scour a hard-wood floor when 
scratched or marred, or to remove 
dirt that is ground in, use steel wool, 
which comes by the pound for this 
purpose. It can be used in the same 
fashion as cotton waste, and is a very 
effective scourer, which wiU not in- 
jure the finest surface. 

Polish for Waxed Floors. — Sub- 
stances recommended for polishing 
waxed floors are beeswax or rosin, 
thinned with turpentine, or parafSn 
wax. Stearin and even tallow can- 
dles are sometimes used for the pur- 
pose, but are much less suitable. 
Pure beeswax thinned with turpen- 
tine is the simplest and perhaps most 
desirable polish, but the following 
are recommended: 



Rub through a coarse grater 6J 
pounds of beeswax. Add 3 pounds of 
pearlash and a little water. Bring to 
a boil and stir well until they cease to 
effervesce. Now stir in 3 pounds of 
dry yellow ocher and pour all into a 
tin pail, having a tight cover, in 
which to preserve it for use. Thin 
when required for use with boiling 
water to the consistency of cream, 
and apply while hot with a soft cloth. 
Polish with a weighted brush and 
wipe up with a coarse flannel. 

Or place in a tin pan 5 ounces 
of powdered rosin, 24 ounces of yel- 
low beeswax, and rub through a 
coarse grater. Add 1 pint of tur- 
pentine, and place the pan in a 
larger pan, surrounded by boiling 
water. This should be done at a dis- 
tance from a stove or open flame, 
and matches should not be lighted in 
the vicinity, as the turpentine gives 
off an inflammable gas. Stir until of 
a uniform consistency, and pour into 
glass fruit jars or tin paUs having 
tight covers to preserve for future 
use. When required for use, thin 
with turpentine to the consistency of 
cream, and apply as above. 

Spots on Waxed Floors. — Apply a 
little benzine or turpentine on a soft 
cloth to remove the wax. Rub clean 
with a dry cloth, and let the benzine or 
turpentine evaporate before waxing. 

To remove dirt that is ground in, 
scour with steel wool. After the spot 
has been removed, rub over the spot 
and adjacent surface with a cloth 
moistened in a solution of wax and 
turpentine or other polisher. Rub 
dry with a weighted brush to a fine 
polish, otherwise it will be sticky. 
Avoid the use of water, as it will turn 
the wax white. Never use soft soap, 
sal soda, or other alkalies, as they 
tend to cut the oil in which the shel- 
lac is mixed, strike through and 
darken the floor beneath. 

Oil for Floors. — Do not use crude 
petrolexun oil on oak or similar hard- 
wood floors. The crude petroleum 
contains a dyestufl which, with the 
addition of tannin, is the basis of 
black ink. All oak and some other 



SWEEPING DAY 



257 



hard woods contain tannin, which 
unites with certain constituents of 
crude oil and some other petroleum 
products to form in the fibers of the 
wood an insoluble black inky dye. 
Thus, in a short time the floor will be 
turned jet black, and its appearance 
ruined. To remove this stain, wash 
the floor with sal soda or caustic pot- 
ash lye, rinse, dry, and apply a solu- 
tion of 1 pound of oxalic acid dis- 
solved in 10 or 13 quarts of warm 
water. Wet the floor with this so- 
lution and let it dry without rms- 
ing. Let stand, if convenient, over 
night. But remember that oxalic 
acid is an active poison. Hence care 
must be taken to keep pets and chil- 
dren out of the room, and not to 
breathe in the dust that rises from 
the dry crystals. Pour out the rins- 
ing water into a pit and cover it with 
earth. Oxalic acid will not injure 
shellac or interfere with any subse- 
quent treatment. 

Care of Hard-wood Floors. — To 
prevent furniture from scratching or 
marring hard-wood floors, get pieces 




'And Rub Down with a Weighted Brush." 



of thick felt or soft rubber or obtain 
from a cobbler a sheet of rubber sol- 
ing. Cut these to the exact size of 



the table and chair feet. Cover them 
with glue, and when the glue becomes 
" tacky " lay them on. Put news- 
papers under the chairs to protect 
the floor until the glue is quite dry. 
The floor will be kept in much bet- 
ter condition if the members of 
the family wear rubber heels on their 
shoes. 

To Restore Wax Floors. — Old wax 
may be removed from a hard-wood 
floor by mixing equal quantities of sal 
soda and slaked lime, and using about 
1 pound of the mixture to a pailful 
of water. Apply this with a mop, 
and afterwards scrub the floor with 
sand soap and water. If necessary 
apply dilute sulphuric acid, 1 part of 
acid to 10 parts of water. After- 
wards rinse in water containing a lit- 
tle ammonia and wipe dry. 

Remove any remaining traces of 
wax by means of turpentine. Other- 
wise shellace will not adhere. 

BUGS 

Care of Rugs. — Before sweeping, 
rugs should be removed from the room 
and thoroughly cleaned before they 
are returned to the floor. If rugs 
are caught by the ends and shaken 
they soon tear out and unravel. 
A better way is to hang them on 
a line and beat them with a carpet 
beater. 

Or lay the rug on a clean floor and 
sprinkle table salt over it. Sweep it 
hard with a broom until it is clean; 
turn it and sweep the other side the 
same way. 

If rugs must be beaten indoors lay 
a damp cloth over them. If they are 
very much soiled, rinse the cloth in 
hot water and repeat until the rug 
is clean. 

To Lay Bugs. — To prevent rugs 
from curling at the corners fasten 
under each corner a triangular bit of 
corrugated rubber. Let these extend 
8 or 9 inches along the rug. Bore 
several small holes in the rubber and 
sew through holes in the fabric. This 
not only keeps the rugs in place but 
makes them last longer. 



258 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



Or sew dress stays or whalebone 
under the corners to keep the rug 
from curling. 

Or turn the rug upside down and 
apply a liberal coat of cold flour paste 
with a brush to the corners and edges. 
Let the rug dry flat on its face, and 
when dry turn it over, and the weight 
of the paste will keep it in position. 

Care of Oriental Hugs. — Oriental 
rugs, if genuine, are in fast colors, 
and the top or right side is practically 
indestructible. The threads at the 
back, however, are very easily dam- 
aged. Hence Oriental rugs should al- 
ways be beaten on the right side. 
When beaten they should be hung on 
the line or laid over grass or other 
soft surface. 

If much soiled, they may be washed 
or scrubbed by means of a stiff brush 
with soap bark dissolved in boiling 
water, and afterwards wiped off with 
a clean sponge and dried with a dry 
cloth. In winter lay an Oriental rug 
on the porch or other flat surface out 
of doors, sprinkle it with snow, and 
brush it off with a stiff broom or 
heavy whisk broom. 

To Brighten Colors. — Slightly mois- 
ten salt with kerosene. Sprinkle this 
over the rug and sweep it off. Kero- 
sene wiU leave no greasy effect. The 
dirt will soon pass off and the colors 
will be freshened. 

Or substitute corn meal for salt. 

MATTING 

To Clean Matting. — First sprinkle 
matting with bits of wet newspa- 
per or similar substances, as with 
carpets, and sweep the way of the 
weave, but not across it. Wash with 
strong salt and water to strengthen 
the fibers. 

Or wash with skim milk, rinse in 
warm water, and dry quickly with a 
coarse cloth. 

To Brighten Matting. — If light- 
colored mattings become stained and 
faded, wash with strong soda water. 
This will give them a uniform solid 
cream color, harmonizing the different 
tints. 



Or with a water-color brush apply 
suitable dyestuff to the pattern to 
revive and restore it. 

OILCLOTH AND LINOLEUM 

To Clean Oilcloth. — Oilcloth should 
not be scrubbed with a stiff brush or 
mop, or saturated with water, nor 
should sal soda or other strong wash- 
ing compounds be used upon it. The 
surface is nothing but paint, and if 
it becomes soaked, especially with 
water containing strong soapsuds or 
washing compounds, it crumbles and 
quickly decays. 

To use a large sponge with luke- 
warm water containing skim milk is 
the best way to wash oilcloth. A very 
little hard white or yellow soap may 
be used if necessary. A sponge is 
excellent, since it leaves no lint, and 
does not admit of scrubbing the floor 
hard enough to crack or peel off the 
surface. 

After removing the dirt with skim 
milk and water, go over it a second 
time, rinsing with a sponge wrung out 
of clear warm water, and dry enough 
to take up nearly all of the mois- 
ture and admit of the floor drying 
quickly. 

Or rub it over with a dry woolen 
cloth. 

Finally go over the surface with a 
rag dipped in boiled linseed oil or 
crude petroleimi oil. This is very 
cheap, costing only 8 or 10 cents a 
quart, and a cloth dipped in it will 
take up enough oil to go over the 
floor several times. After the cloth 
has been once saturated it will require 
but a small quantity of oil each time 
afterwards. 

Or use butternulk to wash the oil- 
cloth. Afterwards rinse with a sponge 
dipped in clear water. 

Table Oilcloths. — The thin oilcloths 
used on kitchen tables, shelves, etc., 
may be cleaned in the same manner 
as the floor oilcloth. Do not use either 
soap or hot water, but moisten the 
rag slightly in kerosene. Rub the oil- 
cloth imtil it is perfectly clean, wring 
the cloth out of hot water, and dip 



SWEEPING DAY 



again in kerosene when necessary. 
Afterwards rub dry with a flannel 
cloth. 

Or wash with skimmed sweet milk or 
buttermilk, and rinse with a sponge 
and clear water. 

Polish with a little linseed oil or a 
cloth slightly dampened with new 
milk. 

To Wax Oilcloths and Linoleums. 
— First wash the floor as above and 
apply a thin coating of wax with a 
flannel cloth. 



Or use a floor oil mixed with wax. 

This gives a hard, smooth surface, 
which is easily wiped up and kept 
clean. 

To Kemove Spots on Oilcloth. — 
Anything hot placed on oilcloth turns 
it white. To remove these spots rub 
with alcohol and polish with a dry 
cloth. 

To Brighten Oilcloth. — Put a little 
salt in the water in which oilcloth is 
washed. This wUl brighten and fresh- 
en the colors with whiclj it is painted. 



CHAPTER X 

HOUSE CLEANING 

CLEANING THE CELLAR— CLEANING TBDE ATTIC AND CLOSETS- 
CLEANING THE CHAMBERS— TO CLEAN FLOOR COVERINGS 
—CLEANING AND REFINISHING WOOD FLOORS— CLEAN[NG 
PAINT— WHITEWASHING— PAPER HANGING— CARE OF WALLS- 
WINDOWS, DOORS, ETC.— CLEANING AND CARE OF FURNI- 
TURE—CLEANING PICTURE FRAMES-CLEANING BRIC-A-BRAC 
AND MISCELLANEOUS OBJECTS— TO CLEAN MARBLE, BRICK, 
AND STONE— CLEANING KITCHEN STOVES AND OTHER 
METALS— PACKING 



In addition to the daily and weekly 
routine of housework it is customary 
to give the house and its furnisWngs 
a thorough overhauling and renova- 
ting once or twice a year, usually in 
the spring and fall. But this custom 
varies in different parts of the coun- 
try, and in cities is also quite differ- 
ent from what it is in rural neighbor- 
hoods. In cities, winter is the season 
when guests are received and most en- 
tertaining takes place; hence the fall 
house cleaning, as a preparation for 
the duties and festivities of the win- 
ter season, is likely to be the more 
important. 

In rural neighborhoods, however, 
sununer is the period of greatest ac- 
tivity, and the spring house cleaning 
is usually the more thorough and 
painstaking. 

Spring House Cleaning. — Spring 
house cleaning should ordinarily be 
postponed until the weather has be- 
come sufficiently settled, so that win- 
ter underwear, draperies, carpets, etc., 
may be stored away if desired, and so 
that the health of the household need 
not suffer by reason of the open win- 
dows and dampness attendant upon 
scrubbing floors and walls, whitewash- 
ing, painting, and the like. Most 
women, after constant confinement 
during the winter months, are more 



or less run down in the spring, and 
the change from the bracing tempera- 
ture of winter to the enervating 
warmth Of the first spring days is 
likely to result in a lowering of tone 
that may expose them to serious mis- 
chief from overexertion. For these 
reasons there is a gradual change of 
sentiment in favor of making spring 
house cleaning a comparatively simple 
affair, putting off the heavy work un- 
til the fall. But the spring house 
cleaning must be sufficiently thorough 
to renovate and protect ail woolens, 
furs, and feathers from the ravages 
of moths, to remove heavy hangings 
and draperies, and everything that 
impedes the free circulation of air 
during the heated term. 

Plan of Campaign. — The work of 
bouse cleaning will be very much sim- 
plified by thinking out in advance a 
systematic plan of campaign. In a 
blank book make an inventory of the 
principal contents of each room. 
Measure the floors and the width and 
length of the window shades needed. 
Ascertain the number of yards of 
carpet or matting, the number of 
roUs of wall paper and the yards 
of border required for every room in 
the house, the amount of paint or 
stain needed for the various floors; 
also the size of the dinirtg-room table- 



260 



HOUSE CLEANING 



261 



"jloths, the length and width of sheets, 
and the size of pillow slips for dif- 
ferent pillows. Divide the book in 
sections, assign a. number of pages to 
each room in the house, take accurate 
measurements, note them down, and 
preserve the book for future use. Con- 
sult it to determine what changes shall 
be made fax the rooms, what articles 
shaU be stored away, and what, if 
any, need to be repaired. Provide in 
advance the requisite amount of ma- 
terials of all sorts, and have them at 
hand when the work begins. 

William Morris says: "Have noth- 
ing in your house that you do not 
know to be useful or believe to be 
beautiful." Hence before house clean- 
ing go through the house and critical- 
ly examine each obj ect. Some of them 
may have passed their usefulness, or 
your tastes may have changed and 
you may no longer regard them as 
beautiful. Then remove them without 
question. The art of successful living 
consists in getting along vrith as few 
articles of furniture as possible, rath- 
er than in accumulating many differ- 
ent pieces. Remember that every ad- 
ditional one is an additional care. If 
you decide to retain an article, consid- 
er, if it is in order or not, if it can be 
put in order, and in that case whether 
it can be done at home. Gather up 
such pieces as you decide to repair 
and take them to the family workshop. 

Consider the discarded articles to 
see if they can be given away, sold, 
or used for fuel, and if not, throw 
them together to make a bonfire to 
celebrate with when the house clean- 
ing is finished. 

Rules for House Cleaning. — It is a 
good rule in house cleaning to first 
clean the cellar, because it is the most 
difficult and often the most neglected 
part of the house. Afterwards begin 
with the attic and work down. 

Another good rule is to clean thor- 
oughly one room at a time, settling it 
as you go. 

Preparations for House Cleaning. 
— Experienced housewives arrange for 
house cleanii^g by preparing food in 
advance, boiling ham, baking beans, 



pies, bread, and cake, so as to be 
spared as far as possible the labor of 
cooking while house cleaning is go- 
ing on. 

WhUe house cleaning, dress appro- 
priately for the work. Some house- 
keepers wear a divided skirt or bloom- 
ers made of four widths of heavy dark 
skirting. These are gathered into bands 
and buttoned about the ankles and 
waist. They are valuable protectors 
for skirts, and facilitate climbing step- 
ladders, scrubbing floors, etc. 

Pull the sleeves up as far as you 
want them to go, and put elastic bands 
on the arms over the sleeves. Trim 
the finger nails as short as can be 
borne with comfort. This prevents 
their being broken or torn when obliged 
to work without gloves. Wear a dust 
cap, a big apron, and loose gloves. 

Half the disagreeableness of house 
cleaning is taken away by having a 
lotion to apply to parboiled and un- 
comfortable hands. Soak 2 or 3 ounces 
of quince seed over night, strain 
through cheese cloth, and add 3 quarts 
of water and 2 ounces each of glycer- 
in, boracic acid, and witch-hazel. This 
is one of the best of lotions. 

CUIASISO THE CELLAB 

To Clean Cellars. — Begin to clean 
house with the cellar. It is a hard 
job, and you may be inclined to neg- 
lect it if you wait till the rest of the 
work has been done. No part of the 
house cleaning is so important from 
the standpoint of sanitary cleanliness 
or, because it is out of sight, more 
likely to be neglected. 

First sweep all dust and cobwebs 
from rafters and ceiling; sweep the 
shelves and wash them with strong 
suds or soda and water; remove, 
empty, and clean bins and barrels 
that have contained vegetables, and 
set them out of doors exposed directly 
to the air and sunlight. If the cellar 
admits of thorough drainage, wash 
down the ceilings, walls, and floor 
with a hose, or dash water on them 
from pails by means of a large dip- 
per. Open the bulkhead windows and 



262 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



sweep the floor, especially digging out 
the corners. Remove everything that 
is not necessary. The fewer objects 
to accumulate dust and to get in the 
way when cleaning, the better. 

Dissolve 2 pounds of copperas in 1 
gallon of water, and sprinkle the walls 
and floor with this solution by means 
of an old whisk broom or watering 
pot having a fine spray. This is a 
good disinfectant and assists in driv- 
ing away rats and other vermin. 

Finally whitewash the walls with an 
old whitewash brush or old broom, 
and use plenty of whitewash, to which 
add copperas at the rate of i pound 
to 1 pound for each pailful. 

Vegetable Cellars, — If vegetables 
are kept in barrels or bins in the house 
cellar, they should be examined from 
time to time and picked over as soon 
as they begin to rot. Leaves from 
cabbage heads, celery tops, and other 
vegetable stuff not wanted should be 
carefully removed before they begin 
to spoil. Decaying organic matter of 
any kind is the favorite breeding 
ground of the germs of typhoid fever, 
diphtheria, and other contagious filth 
diseases, and decay is much assisted 
by dampness. Hence unless the cellar 
is perfectly dry, clean and free from 
rotten vegetables, those who are re- 
sponsible for its condition cannot in 
case of sickness have a clfear con- 
science. An outbreak of black diph- 
theria which caused the death of five 
children in a single family was traced 
by a physician directly to some de- 
cayed vegetable matter on the cellar 
floor. 

Or make an outdoor vegetable cel- 
lar by sinking a strong cask or box 
in the ground below the frost line. 
Knock out the bottom and let the 
vegetables rest on the ground. Pro- 
vide a water-tight cover in two layers, 
with sawdust or charcoal between. Or 
throw over the top straw or hay. Thus 
cabbages, celery, and the like may be 
kept fresh in winter without danger 
of contaminating the air of the house. 

To Keep Cellars Warm. — Make a 
flour paste containing a strong glue 
size, and with a whitewash brush apply 



one or more layers of building paper, 
brown paper, or even newspapers to 
the rafters of the ceiling, and let it 
come down over the sills and around 
the frames of windows to prevent 
draughts. The thicker the layer or 
layers of paper the better. This helps 
to keep the floors warm and to make 
the cellar frost proof. 

Care of Casks. — Keep an empty 
cask bunged up tight to keep it sweet. 

Tar casks slightly on the inside to 
assist in preserving salt meat. 

To sweeten a sour cask that has 
held pickles, vinegar, or wine, wash it 
with lime water, or throw in hot char- 
coal and ashes. Add water and let 
the cask soak. 

To remove must or other odors, 
wash with sulphuric acid and rinse 
with clear water, or whitewash with 
quicklime, or char the inside with a 
hot iron. In all cases rinse thorough- 
ly with scalding water before using. 

To Prevent Dampness in Cellars. — 
To avoid damp cellars furnish jets, 
gutters, and leaders to carry rain 
water from the roof to a cistern or 
away from the foundations of the 
house. Lay tile or other drains under 
the cellar floor to carry away water 
from springs or other natural mois- 
ture. Lay cellar walls in mortar made 
of water lime, and cover the cellar 
bottom and walls with hydraulic ce- 
ment, water lime, or concrete made 
by melted asphaltum poured upon a 
surface of gravel and tamped hard 
while hot. 

Or employ a layer of coal tar and 
asphaltum laid on a surface of gravel 
and covered with melted asphaltum 
applied hot. Finish with a layer of 
fine sand. Apply by means of a brush 
a thin layer of waterproof cement to 
the walls, floor, and sills. 

If tile or other drains underly the 
cellar floor, let the floor slant slightly 
to an opening in the drain so that 
water coming in from freshet or oth- 
erwise may be carried off, and so that, 
if desired, the floor and walls may be 
flushed with water. 

To Ventilate Cellars. — The upper 
part of the house being warmer than 



HOUSE CLEANING 



263 



the cellar, the warm air of the upper 
rooms creates, by rising, a suction 
which draws the cellar air into the 
rooms above through cracks in the 
cellar door, or through the doorway 
whenever the door is open. By this 
means any impurities or germs of dis- 
ease in the cellar are communicated 
freely to all parts of the house. Hence 
the importance of good ventilation in 
cellars. 

Locate cellar windows, when possi- 
ble, opposite one another so as to cre- 
ate a draught. Being placed near the 
ceiling, such windows afford good ven- 
tilation. But the best ventilator is a 
chimney reaching down to the cellar 
floor or resting on the foundation wall 
and commvmicating with the cellar by 
one or more good-sized openings. 

Have the cellar windows open freely 
by means of rods or otherwise, and 
keep them open in clear weather when- 
ever possible. 

To Remove Dampness. — Place in the 
cellar a large open box or pan con- 
taining fresh lime. This will tend to 
dry and purify the air. Change the 
lime as fast as it becomes air-slaked. 

Whitewash for Cellars. — Slake 
enough lime for a paUful of white- 
wash. Mix half a pint of flour with 
cold water to a smooth paste, thin 
with scalding water, and boil until it 
thickens. Pour this boiling hot into 
the whitewash and stir vigorously. 

Or use boiled rice strained through 
cheese cloth. Add a teacupful of the 
strained rice to a pailful of slaked 
lime. 

Cover cellar walls twice a year or 
oftener with whitewash, to which add 
copperas at the rate of 3 pounds to 
the gallon. Apply whitewash freely, 
especially in out-of-the-way corners, 
removing all shelves, etc., so as to 
cover the entire surface of the walls. 

To Disinfect Cellars. — Close win- 
dows and other apertures and stuff 
the cracks with burlap. Burn a quan- 
tity of sulphur in a suitable receptacle 
on the cellar floor. An ordinary tin 
pie plate covered with earth or sand 
may be used. Place on this live coals, 
on which sprinkle flowers of sulphur 



or brimstone. Take precautions to 
escape quickly so as not to breathe 
the fumes. 

To Prevent Dust in Cellars. — To 
minimize dust from furnaces, wet the 
ashes by throwing water on them from 
a dipper before taking them up. Or 
sprinkle them with water from a 
watering pot. Or sprinkle over them 
wet sawdust. 

This also prevents dust from rising 
into the upper rooms through the reg- 
isters. 

Bins for Cellars.— Have aU bins for 
use in the cellar small enough to be 
freely movable. Or use barrels, and 
place bins and barrels on planks turned 
on edge to lift them above the cellar 
bottom. Make a. sufficient number of 
swinging shelves by tacking pieces of 
board to the rafters so as to project 
downward, and suspend shelves on 
these to hold canned preserves and 
other articles in place of having shelves 
on the walls. Keep the walls free to 
admit of complete whitewashing. 

Pipes — To Prevent Prost. — Wrap 
exposed water pipes with bands of hay 
or straw twisted tight around them, 
or cover with the asbestos tubes that 
are on the market for this purpose. 

Pumps — To Prevent Freezing. — Re- 
move the lower valve and drive a tack 
into the under side of it, projecting 
in such a way that the valve cannot 
quite close. The pump will work as 
usual, but the water will gradually 
leak back into the well or cistern. 

Or have at hand a suitable hook of 
stout wire by which to lift the valve 
and let the water out of the pipe at 
night. ' 

To Thaw Pipes. — If the pipe is ac- 
cessible, wrap woolen cloths, as old 
pieces of underwear, carpet, and the 
Hke, thickly about it and pour on 
boiling water. This holds the heat 
and melts the ice gradually. 

Or, if possible, pour boiling water 
containing as much salt as it will dis- 
solve into the pipe above the frozen 
part. This will settle and dissolve the 
ice. 

To Clear Drainpipes. — Flush the 
pipe once a week with boiling water 



264 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



containing sal soda. Rinse the kitchen 
sink daily with strong soda Water. 

To Stop Leaks. — For cold-water 
pipes apply a thick paste of yellow 
soap and whiting mixed with a little 
water. Or, if the leak is too large, 
wrap the pipe tightly with a tarred 
cloth bandage, melt the tar, and spread 
it over strong duck canvas or burlap 
cloth three or four inches wide. Be- 
gin to wind the bandage several inches 
from the leak and lap it one half or 
more upon itself at each round. 

For hot-water pipes mix iron filings 
with vinegar and sulphuric acid to a 
thick paste. Dry the pipe, fill the 
cracks with this mixture, and keep 
them dry imtU it sets. This is very 
durable. 

To Protect lead Pipes. — Coat the 
inside of the pipe with sulphide of 
lead. This is insoluble and cannot be 
acted upon by water. To effect this 
fill the pipes with a warm concentrat- 
ed solution of sulphide of potassium, 
and let stand fifteen or twenty min- 
utes. Then rinse it out. The sulphide 
coating will be formed by chemical 
action. 

To Clean Boilers. — To prevent scale 
forming on the inside of the boiler 
put into it two or three white oak 
saplings. These will be entirely dis- 
solved in three or four weeks, and the 
boiler will be clean. 

CLEAirmG THE ATTIC AND CLOSETS 

Closets and Drawers. — Choose a 
sunny day and empty the contents 
of bureau drawers, wardrobes, closets, 
and other storage places upon an old 
quilt or a sheet spread upon the lawn. 
Shake and dust these vigorously with 
a whisk broom, and sort them. Put 
in one pile ragged articles that are no 
longer useful except for carpet rags 
or to sell to the ragman; in another, 
those that are available for dusters, 
mops, dishcloths, and the like. Lay 
aside articles that need to be mended 
or renovated. Separate woolens and 
flannels, which require protection 
against moths, from cotton fabrics, 
which are moth proof. After remov- 



ing viath a whisk broom all traces of 
moths, hang the larger pieces on the 
line and leave the others out of doors 
exposed to direct sunshine. 

Meantime apply suitable moth de- 
stroyers to the insides of the drawers, 
wardrobes, and boxes that have been 
emptied. Take off the wall paper in 
the closets, as behind the wall paper 
is where you will find the nests of 
moths and other vermin. Wash the 
floors and walls with moth destroyers, 
and apply suitable preventives to 
cracks and openings. Wash out the 
insides of the drawers, and take them 
out to dry in the sun. 

Save fine towels that are too worn 
for further use and lay them in the 
bottom of the drawers, viath lavender 
between the folds. 

While the clothes on the line are 
airing, pack flannels, furs, feathers, 
etc., in mothproof paper bags or boxes 
to be stored away in the attic, and 
before the dew falls at night return 
cotton and other fabrics required for 
summer use to the drawers and ward- 
robes that have been cleansed and 
aired. 

Destroy with a hard heart every 
useless thing, and burn everything 
that you see no probability of need- 
ing in the near future. With the best 
of care odds and ends will accumu- 
late, and the labor of handling and 
preserving them in the hope of finding 
use for them by and by is often more 
than they are worth. 

But remember, if similar objects 
are classified and kept together, many 
uses may be found for them collective- 
ly. A lot of old stockings may be 
turned into a quilt. Old underwear 
is useful for dusters and many other 
purposes. Hence sort, classify, and 
arrange as much as you can, but when 
odds and ends are left over, throw 
them away. 

Drawers that Stick. — Now is the 
time to remedy the bureau drawer 
that sticks. If it is not quite dry 
when returned to its place, you will 
discover the spot that in damp weath- 
er is likely to swell and make trouble. 
Take a piece of common yellow soap. 



HOUSE CLEANING 



265 



moisten it, and rub freely the parts 
which are too tight. Also soap the 
under part of the drawer where it 
slides. Or apply a tallow candle. Or 
rub the parts freely with bacon rind. 
But the soap is likely to effect the 
more permanent cure. 

Periodicals. — Each spring the attic 
will reveal a pile of magazines and 
papers. Some of these may be thrown 
away, but in others there will be one 
or more stories or articles of especial 
interest. Take out the wire fasteners 
and sort the contents into fiction. 




"A PiU of Magazines. 



travel, biography, history, and the like. 
Take out of each pile only what is 
really wanted. Thus, for example, the 
best short stories may be collected 
and made into a valuable book. To 
bind these articles together, cut strips 
of manila paper IJ to 2 inches in 
width and the length of the maga- 
zines. Fold these lengthwise in the 
middle, and paste on either side. Slip 
the back edge of the printed pages 
into the creslse thus formed, fastening 
it securely with paste. Now thread a 
needle with strong thread and .sew the 
pages through and through to this rein- 
forcement. Place as many of the sepa- 
rate stories as desired together, bore 
holes through them i inch from the back 
edge near the top, bottom, and in the 
middle, and lace them together vnth 
a strong cord. Draw over the out- 



side of all a strong manila cover, past- 
ing it liberally to the back. 

Or the sheets may be sent to a book- 
binder and at a slight expense made 
into an interesting and valuable book. 

Or the periodicals will always be 
welcome at hospitals, schools, and oth- 
er institutions, which in many cases 
will send for them if notified that they 
may be had at the expense of removal. 

Curtains and Draperies. — Take 
down all curtains and draperies ; laun- 
der, fold, and store them before the 
house cleaning begins. Thus they will 
be out of the way and ready to be 
put up when papering, painting, and 
whitewashing are finished. 

How to Glean Booms. — Clean one 
room at a time, doing everything thor- 
oughly. Settle each room before go- 
ing to another. This avoids upsetting 
the whole house, and is much better 
than cleaning by floors and having all 
the bedrooms or all the living rooms 
upset at the same time. 

First take up the carpet and scrub 
the floor; then beat and clean the car- 
pet and hang it on the line, so that 
both the carpet and the floor from 
which it is taken may have all day to 
dry and air. 

Or, after the floor covering is taken 
up, tlie ceiling may be first cleaned, 
and papered or whitewashed, if neces- 
sary, and the walls papered before the 
floors are scrubbed, this being reserved 
for another day. Lastly, any neces- 
sary painting and varnishing may be 
done and the windows and woodwork 
cleaned. 

In cleaning paint use but little soap, 
as the alkali tends to injure paint and 
varnish. If paint is kept in good con- 
dition by being rubbed occasionally 
with a cloth moistened in kerosene, 
it will need little scrubbing at house- 
cleaning time. 

Last of all, stain or paint the floor, 
or relay the floor covering, and return 
furniture and pictures to their posi- 
tions. 

House-cleaning Hints. — Split open 
two short pieces of rubber hose and 
fasten them on the lower end of the 
stepladder. Turn them up on the 



2Q6 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



sides of the supports, and nail them 
there. This prevents the stepladder 
from slipping on the bare floor. 

Use a stiff bristle brush, preferably 
of wood fiber, to clean the cracks and 
crevices of woodwork, iron beds, and 
the like. Lay the brush when wet 
with the bristle side down. This pre- 
vents the water from soaking into the 
wood and loosening the bristles. 

Or use a damp whisk broom that 
has served its time as a clothes brush 
to take dust from cracks and corners, 
carvings of furniture and woodwork, 
and to clean windows. If rinsed fre- 
quently it removes every particle of 
dust with little trouble and no injury. 

Have at hand a small stick 3 or 4 
feet long and 1 inch in diameter, with 
a screw hook screwed in one end. This 
is always handy to reach for articles 
that have fallen out of the window, 
behind furniture, or into the water 
pail or barrel, to hang or take down 
pictxires, puU down escaped window 
shades, and for many other purposes. 

CLEAOTITQ THE CHAMBEBS 

To Clean Bedrooms. — ^Take down all 
curtains and draperies, if not already 
removed,' and carry them to the laun- 
dry. Put the bedding on the line, 
shake and beat it, and leave it to air. 
Take the mattress out of doors, and 
beat and air it. 

If the bed spring is exposed and of 
metal, take it out of doors and turn 
the hose on it or dash water on it 
from a pail. Let it dry in the sun. 

If the bedstead is of wood, wash it 
with water containing borax or am- 
monia, but do not use washing soda 
or soap, as the former will spoil the 
paint and the latter wiU leave a dis- 
agreeable odor. 

If the bedstead is of metal, wipe 
it with a cloth dipped in kerosene. 
Or brush it over with gasoline and 
wipe off with a dry towel. 

Rub the paint of wooden bedsteads 
with a cloth dipped in paraffin. This 
both cleans and freshens it. 

Remove extra blankets and quilts 
to the laundry. 



Take up carpets and rugs to be 
beaten and shaken, or if there is mat- 
ting on the floor and it is not neces- 
sary to take it up, sprinkle dry salt 
over it and wipe with a cloth wrung 
out of warm water. 

If the floor is of hard wood, wash 
it with gasoline as you would vrith 
water, and ventilate thoroughly before 
admitting a light. Polish with wax 
and suitable furniture polish. 

If the floor covering is drugget, 
scatter moist bran over it and let re- 
main several hours. When swept up 
the bran will take the dirt with it. 
Then scrub the drugget with hot water 
and ammonia by means of a stiff 
scrubbing brush, and afterwards wipe 
off with a soft cloth until the rinsing 
water is perfectly clear. 

To Renovate Hetal Beds. — If the 
enamel is worn from a white enameled 
bed, go over it with an additional coat 
of white enamel, or obtain gilt enamel 




6o Over It witli Enamel.' 



and gild it. This gives the appearance 
of brass. The gilding wears better 
than white enamel and can be washed 
with gasoline. 

Or, if desired, give the white bed 
that needs renovating a coat of' black 
enamel. 

Cotton Blankets. — In sununer, cot- 
ton blankets and spreads, which are 
much cheaper than woolen ones, are 
to be preferred to woolen blankets or 
old-fashioned cotton quilts. They can 



HOUSE CLEANING 



267 



be easily washed and are more sani- 
tary. The aim should be in summer 
to have the bed coverings as light and 
easy to handle as possible. 

Eiderdown. — With use an eider- 
down quUt becomes compacted to- 
gether and loses its elasticity. Take 
it out of doors, shake and brush it, 
and expose it to sunshine for several 
hours. Spread it on the lawn and 
work over it with a stiff whisk broom 
to loosen the nap. Thus its elasticity 
may be restored, and it will again feel 
soft and downy. 

To Clean Mattresses. — Stains on 
mattresses may be removed by cover- 
ing them with dry laundry starch and 
moistening this with enough soap or 
soap jelly (made by melting scraps 
of hard soap in about their own bulk 
of boiling water) to form a thin paste, 
which will dry on, but not soak through 
into the mattress. Let dry, and brush 
off with a stiff whisk broom. Repeat 
if necessary. Afterwards sponge with 
ammonia and water. 

To Purify Feathers. — New feathers 
quickly become foul as the grease con- 
tained in the quills decays. Hence 
they require a, thorough cleansing to 
remove the animal oils and other 
greasy substances. Old feather beds 
may also be renovated. 

First, dry the feathers in the sun- 
shine or by a flre, and put them in a 
sack. Moisten two sheets of burlap, 
lay the feathers between these, and 
beat them to loosen the dirt, which 
will adhere to the wet cloth. 

Prepare a solution of limewater at 
the rate of J pound of quicklime to 
1 gallon of water. Stir vigorously, 
allow to settle, and pour off the clear 
liquor. Soak the feathers In this for 
3 or 4 days. 

Or use instead cooking soda at the 
rate of 1 teaspoonful to 1 quart of 
water. Take a large piece of cheese 
cloth and pour the limewater or soda 
water and feathers upon this so that 
the water will pass through, leaving 
the feathers in the cloth. Now pour 
cold water over them and rinse them 
well. 

Put on a wash boiler half full of 



water, and add a cupful of powdered 
borax. Put the feathers in this, bring 
them to a, boU, and again pour them 
on cheese cloth. Drain and squeeze dry.' 

Tie the corners of the cheese cloth 
together and hang it over a clothes- 
line, shaking occasionally until dry. 
Several days may be required to dry 
the feathers thoroughly. Do not use 
soap to wash feathers. 

Care of Feather Beds. — Many feath- 
er beds are in use which have been 
slept on for more than one generation 
without being renovated. When the 
feathers have been properly cleaned 
and the ticks cared for, they perhaps 
do not need renovating oftener than 
once in two or three years, but at 
least once in three years the feathers 
should be passed into a fresh tick, the 
ticking washed, and the feathers reno- 
vated before they are returned to it. 
After the tick has been washed, rub 
the inside with a mixture of equal 
parts of beeswax and turpentine and 
go over it with a warm iron. This 
will prevent the feathers from being 
soiled by perspiration or otherwise 
or from working through the tick. 

Or, once a year, place the feather 
beds and pillows out of doors on the 
grass or on a clean, flat roof, and 
allow them to be thoroughly drenched 
by a warm summer rain. 

Hang them to the limb of a tree 
to dry in the shade. 

To Clean Feather Pillows.^ — Feath- 
er pillows may be washed without re- 
moving the feathers by boiling them 
in borax water to which a small quan- 
tity of ammonia has been added. Use 
half a teacupful of borax to a boiler- 
ful of water, and add a tablespoonful 
of ammonia. Boil fifteen or twenty 
minutes. After removing the pillow 
from the boiler, scrub the tick, if bad- 
ly stained, by laying it on a wash- 
board and applying suds with a stiff 
brush. Rinse in two or three waters 
and hang on the line in a shady place 
to dry. Shake the pillow and change 
ends two or three times a day. Bring 
the pillows into the house before the 
dew falls or if it should come on to 
rain, as it takes a long time to dry 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



pillows at best. This process makes 
the feathers light, flaky, and sweet 
smelling. 

Or, if you do not wish to wash the 
feathers, pass them into pillow covers 
and hang them on the line to air while 
the ticks are being washed. 

Or put the pillows out of doors in 
a drenching rain storm. Afterwards 
squeeze as much water out of them as 
possible and hang them up to dry in 
a shady place. 

To Mend Old Blankets. — To mend 
all breaks and tears in old blankets, 
cover both sides with cheese cloth. 
Tack all together with white or col- 
ored yarn, and thus make a light quilt 
superior to a comforter. Finish the 
edge by crocheting around all four 
sides. 

To Store Bedding. — Line a large 
packing case with heavy wrapping 
paper by using brass tacks or by 
pasting paper to the inside of the case 
with flour paste and a whitewash 
brush. This will prevent moths from 
making their way through the cracks 
of the case and the folds of the paper. 
Air the bedclothes thoroughly, fold 
blankets in paper, and scatter freely 
among the folds hemlock or arbor- 
vitas sprigs, dry sweet flags, lavender, 
or sachet powder. These are equally 
as effective as moth balls, and give 
the bedclothes an agreeable odor. 
Paste the ends of the paper together 
and paste wrapping paper over the 
top of the case in such a way as to 
leave no cracks through which moths 
can find an entrance. Nail down the 
lid. 

Bedroom Ornaments. — Remove all 
unnecessary bric-a-brac from the bed- 
rooms and take unnecessary articles 
from dressing tables. A room looks 
much daintier without useless little 
things. 

To Clean the Bathroom. — Thor- 
oughly wash down walls and floors, 
clean out the medicine closet, and 
throw away everything that is not 
likely to be used. Look over the shelves 
carefully for cracks and crevices which 
may give lodgment to vermin, and 
wash them with strong soap and 



water. Clean the porcelain tub and 
basin with a cloth wet with kerosene. 
Pour in kerosene, if necessary, and 
scrub with a whisk broom or fiber 
brush. Remove stains from porcelain 
with dilute muriatic acid (1 part of 
acid to 10 parts of water), applied 
by means of a cotton swab held in- a 
cleft stick. Polish the metal work of 
faucets and pipes with a suitable 
cleaner. 

Or clean the bathtub, washbowl, etc., 
with gasoline and flannel. 

When painting the bathroom, if you 
wish the floor darker than the walls, 
without buying two shades of paint, 
get a light-colored paint, as lead color 
or light yellow, and after the walls 
are painted add to the remainder of 
the paint powdered burnt umber. This 
will give to the floor a darker color of 
the same general tone. 

TO CLEAN FLOOB COVEBINGS 

Floors in Summer. — Take up car- 
pets in the' spring, beat and clean 
them, roll them up, protect them 
against moths, and, if desired, store 
them away until the fall house clean- 
ing. Fill the floor cracks, if any, with 
a suitable wood filler, and paint or 
stain the floor, or cover with matting 
during summer. This plan saves time 
and labor in the care of floors, and 
prevents much dust from sweeping 
during the hot months. If carpets can 
be replaced by hard-wood floors and 
rugs, so much the better, and taking 
up carpets during the summer time is 
a step in the right direction. Or, if 
preferred, the carpets may, of course, 
be retm-ned to the floors after clean- 
ing. 

When taking up large rugs and art 
squares for the summer, roll them on 
sticks and sew them in canvas or bed 
ticking. These may be tied with strong 
cords and slung on hooks attached to 
the wall or ceiling in the attic or store- 
room. Thus they are well protected 
and out of the way. 

To Take Up Carpets. — First draw 
the tacks and pick them up without 
moving the carpet. Then begin at one 



HOUSE CLEANING 



end of the room and roll the carpet 
carefully to the other end. Double 
the roll on itself or, if two persons 
can assist, take it up at both ends and 
carry it out of doors to be cleaned. 
Roll up papers or carpet lining care- 
fully with the dust, and take them out 
of doors to be burned. If the papers 
are handled gently little or no dust 
will remain in the room, and the floor 
may be readily cleaned with soapsuds 
and a mop. 

Or, if no lining papers were used 
and the floors are covered with dust, 
sprinkle wet sawdust or bits of wet 
newspaper about the floor, and stir 
them gently with a broom to gather 
the dust. Sweep part of the room at 
a time, taking up the sweepings, and 
repeat with a fresh lot of sawdust or 
newspaper. Afterwards wash the floor 
with a mop. 

To Put Down Carpets. — Use an 
ordinary carpenter's hammer, taking 
care to choose a tool which has a 
square, flat head, and not a hammer 
the head of which has grown round. 
One or two blows with such a tool 
will drive a tack, where a small tack 
hammer will require six or seven. The 
best and most convenient carpet 
stretcher is a pair of rubber over- 
shoes. Tack the carpet down on one 
side, put on a pair of old rubbers, and 
scuff across the room. Repeat the 
process for the other three sides. If 
one person can stretch the carpet and 
another tack it as fast as it is 
stretched, it may be laid very quickly 
and with comparatively little effort. 

Oarpets — To Prevent Wear. — Before 
returning old carpets to the floor, rip 
up the seams and transpose the 
breadths, putting the least worn strips 
in place of those that are most worn; 
or turn the carpet end for end to 
change the wear. 

Or, if the carpet is ingrain, turn 
and use wrong side up for a season. 

Stair Carpets — To Prevent Wear. — 
Tack several thicknesses of newspaper 
or carpet lining or old carpet on the 
top of each step, having them deep 
enough to hang three of four inches 
over the edge. This pad prevents the 



stair carpet from wearing along the 
edge. It doubles the life of the stair 
carpet. 

To Uend a Rag Carpet. — Holes in 
rag carpet caused by the breaking of 
the warp may be mended by sewing 
back and forth on the sewing machine. 
Large holes may be mended in this 
manner so as not to be noticeable. 

When cutting out the good parts 
of an old rag carpet, sew across the 
rags back and forth before cutting. 
This prevents the carpet from ravel- 
ing when cut, and the edges of the 
good pieces may be sewed together 
with the seam held down. 

To Sweep Carpets. — Before taking 
up the carpet it should be well swept. 
The less dust it contains the quicker 
it can be beaten. Sprinkle with salt 
or corn meal, or with a mixture of 
salt and corn meal moistened with 
kerosene. 

Or, if fresh clippings from a lavni 
mower can be had, sprinkle the carpet 
with them. Or, if the carpet is of a 
dark color, with wet tea leaves. Tea 
leaves may stain a light-colored car- 
pet. 

Or wring a newspaper out of cold 
water until it is damp, but not wet. 
Tear in small pieces and sprinkle with 
them. Sweep thoroughly before taking 
up the tacks. 

To Beat Carpets. — If you have a 
clean green lawn, draw the carpet 




" Use a Wire Beater." 

over the grass for some distance, turn, 
and draw back on the other side. Beat 



270 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



the carpet v/hile lying on the grass. 
Reverse the carpet so as to draw it 
over another spot, and beat on the 
other side. Then hang it over a line 
and beat until clean. Beat first thor- 
oughly on the wrong side and after- 
wards more gently on the right. 

To beat carpets, use preferably a 
wire beater made by bending a heavy 
piece of wire 8 or 10 feet long and J 
inch or more in thickness. Of this 
form a loop, and attach the ends to a 
convenient handle, as a broomstick. 

Or use flexible hickory switches 
rather than heavy sticks, which may 
injure the warp of the carpet. 

To Clean Carpets. — If a carpet is 
much soiled it may require washing 
or scouring after having been beaten. 
This may be done after the carpet has 
been laid on the floor. First remove 
stains and grease spots. Next wash, 
then, with a stiff bristle brush the size 
of a nailbrush, apply suds made with 
warm water and one of the following 
cleansing mixtures: 

Have at hand a pail containing 
suds, another containing clear hot 
rinsing water, a stiff bristle brush, 
a large sponge, and a number of coarse 
porous cloths. Use as little water as 
possible. Take one breadth at a time 
and scrub what can be reached with- 
out moving. Rinse this section imme- 
diately with a sponge wrung out of 
clear water and dry with a coarse 
cloth before proceeding to the next. 
Soap soiled spots with any good hard 
white soap dipped in water. Take 
about IJ yards at a time and work 
quickly, so that the water wiU not 
soak into the carpet. 

Or pure soapsuds made by dissolv- 
ing 1 bar of castile of other hard 
white soap in 2 gallons of water. 

Or one bar of hard white soap, 1 
tablespoonful each of borax, washing 
soda, fuller's earth, and salts of tar- 
tar. Cut 'the soap fine, mix the in- 
gredients in a kettle, add 1 gallon of 
boUing water, and stir until all are 
dissolved. 

Or 1 pint of ox gall dissolved in 1 
quart of cold water. Apply with a 
scrubbing brush until a lather is 



formed. Rub pure ox gall on soiled 
places, rinse, and dry as above. 

Or dissolve 1 bar of hard white soap 
in 1 gallon of water. Dissolve 4 ounces 
of borax and 4 ounces of sal soda 
in 4 gallons of water; mix, remove 
from the fire, and add J pint of 
alcohol, stirring well. Apply when 
cold. 

Finally, open the windows and al- 
low the carpet to thoroughly dry be- 
fore the room is used. Kindling a fire, 
if convenient, will assist in drying. 

Or ingrain carpets may be ripped 
into breadths and washed in the tub 
like other woolen goods with soap and 
water, or hung out on the line during 
a warm summer rain. 

Any of these methods is suitable for 
all forms of carpets or rugs of similar 
materials, as Oriental, Smyrna, and 
domestic rugs, art squares, and the 
like. 

To Clean Oriental and Other Rugs. 
— Oriental rugs and other rugs having 
fast colors may be scrubbed with soap 
and water. Or any of the above cleans- 
ing mixtures. Tack the rug on a bare 
floor, as a porch or piazza, and pro- 
ceed as with a carpet. 

The following mixture is especially 
recommended for the best quality of 
rugs or carpets and other woolen fab- 
rics: dissolve 8 oimces of good white 
soap in the same quantity of boiling 
water; add 10 ounces of aqua am- 
monia, 5 ounces of alcohol, 5 ounces 
of glycerin, and 4 ounces of ether or 
chloroform. Keep in a fruit jar or 
large glass bottle and cork tightly. 
Use 1 tablespoonful of this prep- 
aration to a pailful of warm water, 
and apply with a stiff brush. Or for 
obstinate stains use a stronger solu- 
tion. 

To Wash Goatskin Rugs. — Wash 
goatskin rugs in gasoline, or in a mix- 
ture of gasoline and pure soapsuds 
made of hard white soap. 

To Freshen Faded Carpets.— After 
carpets have been cleaned and laid, the 
colors, if faded, may be freshened by 
sprinkling the carpet with strong salt 
water and sweeping hard. 

Or dampen a cloth with ammonia 



HOUSE CLEANING 



271 



and rub over the surface of the 
carpet. 

Or put i pint of turpentine in about 
li gallons of water. Wring a cloth 
out of this solution and with it rub 
the carpet. 

Or go over the carpet with a broom 
or whisk broom moistened with gaso- 
line. 

Or put 1 cupful of cold tea and 1 
tablespoonful of turpentine in 2 quarts 
of warm water. Dip the broom in 
this before sweeping. 

Or put 3 tablespoonfuls of turpen- 
tine and 4 of salt in 3 gallons of water, 
and moisten the broom with it. 

Or put 1 gill of ox gall in 1 gallon 
of water and apply with a cloth wrung 
out so that it will not drip. 

Or dissolve 1 teaspoonful of alum 
in 1 gallon of water. 

Or apply to the patterns suitable 
dyestuffs or water colors mixed with 
gimi arable, following the outline of 
the design with a water-color brush. 

Or any of the above may be ap- 
plied with a clean mop if care is taken 
to wring it out so that it wiU be damp 
rather than wet. The above will not 
only brighten and set the colors of a 
carpet, restore faded colors, and pre- 
vent fresh colors from fading, but will 
also act as preventives against moths, 
and to some extent kill germs that 
may be present in the carpet. 

To Clean Bag Carpets. — Shake and 
beat the carpet, drag it across the 
lawn a few times to remove dust by 
contact with the soft grass, and leave 
it spread on the grass or hung over a 
line during a gentle rain. Remove 
any grease spots with 'a suitable 
cleanser. 

To Remove Grease from Carpets. — 
Substances recommended for taking 
grease out of a carpet are ammonia, 
saltpeter, ox gall, chloroform, ether, 
gasoline, fuller's earth, potter's clay, 
and various combinations of these. 

To Remove Grease. — Apply gaso- 
line, benzine, or naphtha with a sponge 
or stiff scrubbing brush. 

Or, if the grease is fresh, cover the 
spot with a layer of French chalk or 
fuller's earth. Lay a piece of brown 



paper or blotting paper upon the chalk,, 
and place on it a hot flatiron. Change 
the iron occasionally. The grease will 
be melted and absorbed by the chalk 
and powder. 

Or apply pure ox gall with a stiff 
brush. 

Or apply chloroform or ether with 
a toothbrush. 

Or shave 2 ounces of hard white 
soap in 2 quarts of water. Add 2 
oimces of aqua ammonia, 1 ounce of 
glycerin, and 1 ounce of ether; mix 
and a1)ply with a stiff brush. 

Or shave and dissolve 2 ounces of 
hard white soap in 1 quart of water. 
Add 2 ounces of ammonia and 1 tea- 
spoonful of saltpeter and apply with 
a brush. 

To Remove Ink Stains. — Cover 
quickly with dry salt or starch. Take 
this up with a spoon as it soaks up 
the ink, but do not rub or sweep it. 
It will take up the surplus and pre- 
vent the spot from spreading. Leave 
the spot covered with dry salt and 
test to see the kind of ink spilled. 
Put some of the ink on a piece of 
writing paper and allow it to dry. 
Or, better, take some writing made 
with the same ink that has stood sev- 
eral days and test that. First apply 
water, and if the ink runs, after hav- 
ing been thoroughly dried, it is proba- 
bly stylographic ink, made of coal-tar 
products, eosin or nigrosine. In this 
case you must not use buttermilk or 
any acid. Use instead an alkali, as 
potash lye or sal soda, diluted with 
water. If the dry ink does not run 
when touched with water, it is proba- 
bly an iron-gall ink or logwood ink 
with or without aniline dyes. For 
these inks use dilute sulphuric acid, 1 
part of acid to 10 parts of water. 
If this takes out the color, restore it 
with aqua ammonia. 

Or cover with fresh salt or starch, 
and moisten with buttermilk or salts 
of sorrel or tartaric acid, and let stand 
until dry. Repeat if necessary. 

If the colors fade, apply aqua am- 
monia. 

To Remove Kerosene. — To remove 
kerosene spilled on a carpet, cover the 



272 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



spot with blotting paper or brown 
paper and press with a hot iron. Re- 
peat if necessary. 

Or cover with corn meal, starch, or 
salt, and let stand until dry. 

To Eemove Whitewash.— -Scrub with 
soapsuds applied with a brush, and 
renew the color by applying aqua am- 
monia, vinegar, or other acid. 

To Remove Soot. — To remove soot 
which sometimes, in case of a defec- 
tive flue or turning up a lamp too high, 
fills a room and falls on the carpet, 
sprinkle the floor liberally with corn 
meal and sweep carefully a little 
at a time, taking up the sweepings 
as you go and before they are trod- 
den on. Continue to apply corn 
meal and sweep until the soot is all 
removed. 

To Take Tip Matting. — Take up the 
matting, roll it up, and shake as much 
dust from it as possible by jarring it 
on the floor. UnroU it on a green 
lawn and apply the hose to it, or dash 
pails of water on it until it is thor- 
oughly clean. This should be done on 
a hot day, and the matting should be 
thoroughly dried in the open air as 
quickly as possible. Take it in before 
the dew falls and air it again the 
second day if it does not quite dry 
the first. 

Or draw the matting over a table 
and apply moist corn meal with a 
scrubbing brush, thoroughly cleaning 
a section at a time. 

Or scrub with bran water. 

To Clean Matting on the Floor. — 
Matting should not be washed or 
scrubbed with soapy water, as damp- 
ness is injurious to it. It may be 
swept with a broom previously dipped 
in hot water, and afterwards gone 
over with a flannel cloth or sponge 
dipped in salt and water. The salt 
wiU freshen the colors and prevent 
the matting from turning yellow. It 
should be quickly dried with a second 
cloth before the water soaks in. 

Or borax may be used in the water 
in place of salt. Afterwards, to give 
it a gloss and freshen the colors, it 
may be gone over with a cloth slightly 
moistened in fresh milk. 



To Bemove Stains from Hatting. 
— Matting that has been badly stained 
may be cleaned by washing with a 
solution of oxalic acid in the propor- 
tion of 1 oimce of acid to 1 pint of 
water. Apply to the stain with a stiff 
brush, use as little of the solution as 
possible, and afterwards wipe off with 
a dry cloth. Care must be taken to 
throw out the water immediately after 
using, as oxalic acid is a deadly 
poison. 

To Hemove Grease Spots. — Cover 
with French chalk and moisten with 
turpentine. Let this stand for a. few 
days, and .then scrub off with a stiff 
brush. 

To lay Matting. — Before laying 
matting, cover the floor with several 
thicknesses of old newspapers. Mat- 
tftig is porous and lets the dust 
through. The paper catches this and 
admits of its being easily removed at 
house-cleaning time. Paper also pro- 
tects the matting from the sharp and 
uneven edges of the boards. 

Matting may be tacked down with 
ordinary carpet tacks or double- 
pointed brads. 

Or the different breadths may be 
sewed together with strong linen or 
cotton thread, using loose buttonhole 
stitches an inch or an inch and a half 
apart. To prevent tacking, the edges 
may be fastened with flour paste. 

Or, to avoid sewing, the edges of 
the several breadths may be pasted 
down. 

Pieces of matting may also be used 
as rugs on hard-wood floors, especially 
for bedroom use in summer, by sewing 
the breadths together with buttonhole 
stitches and binding the cut ends with 
cotton braid or tape. 

To lay Oilcloths. — Oilcloths may be 
put down without the use of tacks by 
making a cooked paste of flour and 
water somewhat thicker than flour 
starch. Lay the oilcloth in place and 
apply a strip of paste about an inch 
wide first to the floor and afterwards 
to the edge of the oilcloth. Stand a 
heavy board edgewise over this strip 
until the oilcloth sticks. 

Or, if Conditions are right, merely 



HOUSE CLEANING 



273 



press the oilcloth down with the hands. 
The edges may be fastened to the 
floor in the same manner. 

Thus the oilcloth can be taken up 
when necessary without the injury 
caused by tacks and with little difB- 
culty. 

To Repair a Smyrna Rug. — Shak- 
ing a Smyrna rug often ravels out the 
ends. Continue this raveling so as to 
expose two or three inches of the 
woolen filling. Tie and knot the loose 
threads to form a fringe. This will 
prevent additional raveling, and the 
fringe will stand as much wear as if 
new. Use the pattern as a guide, so 
as to make both ends uniform. 

To Patch Rug:s and Carpets. — A 
hole in a rug or carpet may be patched 
with the rubber mending tissue used 
for patching garments. Dampen a 
piece of the same material or of bur- 
lap, lay over this a piece of the rub- 
ber mending tissue, and place it di- 
rectly under the hole. Over all lay a 
piece of brown paper and press with 
a hot iron. Clip off any frayed edges 
with scissors or darn them with the 
ravelings. 

To Clean Sheepskin Rugs. — ^A sheep- 
skin rug should never be inmiersed in 
water. The less the pelt side is wet 
the better. Hence tack the skin on a 
barrel, pelt side down, and apply hot 
soapsuds to the wool side with a stiff, 
clean scrubbing brush until it is clean. 
Rinse well by dashing cold water 
upon it, putting in the last water suf- 
ficient bluing to make the wool ap- 
pear white, and leave it on the barrel 
to dry. This process does not expose 
the pelt to the rays of the sun, which 
would cause it to become dry and 
hard. After the wool is dry go over 
it carefully with a clean currycomb 
or other coarse comb to prevent the 
wool from matting. It will thus be 
left fluffy and white as snow. 

Stair Carpets. — The better plan is 
to leave the stairs uncarpeted, but if 
a stair carpet is used the steps should 
be padded, especially over the edges, 
as otherwise the carpet will tend to 
wear along the edge. For this pur- 
pose use cotton batting or carpet felt 



or folded newspapers, tacking them 
at the back of each step and allowing 
them to fail two or three inches over 
the edge. This will also assist in dead- 
ening the sound of footsteps. 

ClEAITIirG AUD REFINISHING WOOD 
FLOORS 

Cracks in Floors. — Place in a 
saucepan 1 pound of pastry flour and 
rub up with a little cold water un- 
til free from lumps. Add 3 quarts 
of boiling water, place on the stove, 
bring to a boil, and stir in 1 table- 
spoonful of alum. Cut a quantity of 
newspaper into fine bits and stir it 
into this paste until it is about as 
thick as putty. Boil and stir until 
the mass is of a uniform consistency. 
Fill the cracks with this by means 
of a putty knife. Or a case knife 
with the point broken or filed square 
across will answer the purpose. Be 
sure to crowd it into the crack as 
deep as possible and finish level with 
the surface. This hardens like papier- 
mach^, is of similar appearance and 
nearly as hard as the wood itself, and 
is very durable. 

Or make a strong glue size of 1 
ounce of glue to 16 ounces of water, 
and while boiling hot stir in bits of 
newspaper as above; or equal quanti- 
ties of fine sawdust and prepared 
chalk; or plaster of Paris, and apply 
as above. Any of these may be mixed 
with coloring matter to match the 
boards. 

Or cracks may be fiUed with putty. 
But this is not equally good, since 
with shellac or varnish it shows 
through, and is of a slightly different 
color than the wood. 

Oil for Floors. — To oil floors, use 
linseed oil boiled. First remove all 
previous wax, paint, or varnish, wash 
the floor clean and let it dry. Ap- 
ply the oil with a paint brush, keep- 
ing it at the boiling point by means 
of a small alcohol stove or other- 
wise. 

One or two coats of oil, applied 
twice a year, will greatly improve 
kitchen or other rough wood floors, 



274 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVEEIES 



and the addition of a coat of wax 
wUl improve the finish and prevent 
the oil from soiling anything. 

An oiled floor should be cared for 
In the same manner as a waxed floor, 
without the use of soap, washing 
powder, or an alkali. 

To Color Floor Oil. — Add J table- 
spoonful of burnt umber to each 
quart of oil to darken it. Or an equal 
amount of yellow ocher to make it 
light. 

Stains for Floors. — Ordinary oil 
and lead paints are not suitable for 
floors for two reasons: they tend to 
soften the wood, and also to crack, 
chip, and peel, or wear away in spots 
that are most trodden, so as to give 
the floor an uneven appearance. 
Hence suitable stain^ (which are the 
same colored pigments that are used 
in paints thinned with oils so as to 
penetrate into the fiber of the wood, 
but without lead) are better for this 
purpose. 

Or the pigment may be applied in 
a vehicle of glue size. 

Or various dyestuffs, as aniline and 
other dyes, may be applied, either 
dissolved in water or oil. 

But the following wUl be found 
the most generally satisfactory: 

For a, floor 16 feet square, or ap- 
proximately 250 square feet of floor 
space, one heavy or two thin coats, 
mix 3 quarts of cold-drawn linseed 
oil and 1 quart of turpentine, to 
which add 4 ounces of Japan dryer. 
Stir in about 3 heaping tablespoon- 
fuls of any desired pigment or mix- 
ture of pigment, or enough to bring 
the whole to about the consistency 
of ordinary lead and oil paint, and 
bring to a boil over a slow fire. Dis- 
solve with gentle heat 2 or 3 ounces 
of yellow beeswax in a little tur- 
pentine, taking care that the tur- 
pentine does not catch fire. Stir in 
the wax, remove from the fire, and 
when about lukewarm, thin with tur- 
pentine to about the consistency of 
new milk. Try the stain on a piece 
of the same kind of wood as the 
floor before using, to see if the color 
is right. Soft wood like pine will 



absorb more of the color than hard 
wood like maple. Hence it is im- 
portant to thin the stain to the 
right consistency to get the desired 
effect. Take care to apply the stain 
evenly with the brush, as in painting, 
and lay it on freely the way of the 
grain, rather than against it. The 
addition of turpentine causes the 
stain to strike into the wood. 

Or in place of cold-drawn linseed 
oil with turpentine, use boiled linseed 
oil mixed with any desired pigment, 
and apply boiling hot. Keep the oil 
at the boiling point by means of an 
alcohol stove or otherwise. 

Or dissolve 3 ounces of glue in Si 
quarts of soft water. Remove from 
the stove and stir in 3 pounds of 
yellow ocher. Apply with a paint 
brush while hot, and foUow with a 
coat of boiled linseed oil. Let stand 
over night before walking on it. 

Or to give the floor a deep black 
like ebony, boU 1 pound of logwood 
chips in 2 quarts of water down to 

1 quart, and apply one or two coats 
with a paint brush. When dry, fol- 
low with a strong solution of sul- 
phate of iron in water. Afterwards, 
when dry, apply a thin coat of boiled 
linseed oil, wax, and polish. 

Or to 6 quarts of caustic-potash 
lye made from wood ashes add 1 
pound of copperas more or less, to 
give a light or dark oak shade as de- 
sired, and apply one or more coats 
with a brush. When dry, varnish the 
floor, wax, and polish. 

Pigment for Stains. — ^Add any of 
the following pigments in the form 
of dry powder at the rate of about 

2 heaping tablespoonfuls to the gal- 
lon of stain, to obtain the colors 
mentioned : 

To imitate mahogany, use burnt 
sienna. For black .walnut, burnt um- 
ber or Vandyke brown. For cherry, 
burnt sienna mixed vrith iron oxide. 
For yellow, raw sienna, yellow ocher, 
or raw umber. Or any of the above 
may be combined freely to form 
tints or shades as desired. Experi- 
ments may be made by adding the 
pigments a little at a time and test- 



HOUSE CLEANING 



275 



ing the color from time to time on a 
piece of board of the same kind of 
wood as the floor is made of. 

Varnish for Stained Floors. — 
Place in a 6-quart saucepan about 
10 ounces of linseed oil. Bring to a 
boil over a brisk fire, stirring con- 
stantly, and stir in 3 ounces of 
pure white borate of manganese in 
very fine powder. Heat separately 8 
pounds of linseed oil to the boUing 
point, and add it to the first solution 
in a thin stream, stirring constantly. 
Continue to heat the mixture as hot 
as possible without burning. Stir 
constantly and boil for half an hour. 
Take off the stove and strain through 
cheese cloth. Apply one or two coats 
while hot, and foUow when dry with 
shellac or hard white copal varnish. 

Or oil stains may be followed by 
ordinary shellac varnish with the ad- 
dition of 4 ounces of cold-drawn lin- 
seed oil to each quart of varnish. One 
quart of varnish wUl be required for 
a floor 12 by 13 or about ISO square 
feet of surface. 

To Clean Stained Floors. — Obtain 
a quantity of coarse sawdust of non- 
resinous wood free from dust or 
dirt, and store it in a bin where it 
will be kept dry and clean. Scatter 
this sawdust freely over the floor and 
scrub the floor with it by means of 
a stiff scrubbing brush, as if using 
water. The sawdust may then be 
swept up and burned, and the floor 
wiped up with a soft cloth drawn 
over the head of a broom. This is 
suitable treatment for unpainted, 
waxed, or varnished floors if much 
dirt has been tracked in upon them. 

Or wring a mop out of kerosene 
oil and wipe up with this. Use about 
1 quart for an ordinary floor. Use 
for this purpose only refined kero- 
sene of the best' quality, but do not 
use it freely on oak, as it tends to 
darken the wood. 

Care of Oil-stained Floors. — An 
oil-stained • floor will not soak up 
grease or show spots like a bare 
floor, and will not require scouring. 
It may be wiped up by means of a 
mop wrung out in clear warm water. 



but do not use soft soap, washing 
powders, or any alkali on an oiled 
surface, as the alkali will dissolve the 
oU. Oil-stained floors may be pol- 
ished with wax or turpentine if de- 
sired. 

Or the oa stain may be followed 
by one or more coats of hard white 
copal or sheUac varnish before the 
wax is added. 

To Clean Wood Floors. — Detergents 
recommended for cleaning kitchen 
floors and other coarse and unpainted 
woodwork are caustic potash and soda 




" Clean a Small Section, 



lyes, soft soap, sand, lime, chloride of 
lime, ammonia, kerosene, gasoline, and 
various mixtures of these. 

To scrub a wood floor, first take up 
grease spots. Then apply hot soap- 
suds with a scrubbing brush or mop, 
rinse with clear water, and wipe dry. 
Clean and dry a small section of the 
floor at a time and change the water 
frequently. 

Mops and Pails. — ^A strong pail fit- 
ted with a small wringer such as is 
used by janitors of large buildings 
will be found a great convenience. To 
save stooping, place this on a chair. 
Use two mops of soft woolen rags, 
one of small size for washing the floor, 
and a larger one for wiping dry. 



276 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



TTnpaiilted Floors. — An unpainted 
board floor, "white enough to eat 
off," as the homely saying goes, is 
very attractive, but requires a good 
deal of hard work. Our grandmoth- 
ers used to cover unpainted floors 
with sand. Thus the family, in the 
process of walking to and fro, kept 
the floor boards scoured to a snowy 
whiteness. This is still a good way 
to whiten an unpainted board floor. 
Sprinkle the floor freely with clean 




"A Pail with a Small Wringer." 

white sand, and if there is no objec- 
tion, let it remain a few days. Or 
the floor may be scoured with dry 
sand by means of a stiff scrubbing 
brush. The best sand for this pur- 
pose Is obtained by purchasing mar- 
ble clippings and heating them to 
redness in an old iron kettle or other- 
wise. When cold, they may be read- 
ily pulverized. 

Or prepare a scouring mixture 
composed of 3 parts of sand, 2 parts 
of soft soap or soap jelly, and 1 part 
of lime. Apply with a stiff scrubbing 
brush, rinse with clear water, and rub 
dry with a flannel cloth. This has 
the additional advantage that it kiUs 
vermin. 



Or mix equal parts of slaked lime 
and calcinated soda. Let stand 
about an hour and add eight times 
their weight of cold water. Place on 
the fire and bring to a boU. Wet the 
floor with this by means of a mop. 
Let stand over night to dry. Next 
morning scrub by means of a stiff 
brush with scouring sand and water. 

Or moisten a thin flannel cloth with 
kerosene, draw it over the head of a 
broom, and wipe up the floor each 
day with this. It removes dust and 
grease, and thus obviates the necessity 
for scrubbing oftener than once every 
two or three weeks. 

Or scatter sand over the floor and 
with an old whisk broom sprinkle 
upon the sand a solution of 1 pound 
of caustic potash or soda in 1 quart 
of water. Scrub with hot water and 
scrubbing brush, or mop, rinse, and 
dry. 

Or apply soapsuds and sal soda. 

Or dissolve tmslaked lime in potash 
lye and apply with a mop. 

Or add 1 tablespoonful of ammonia 
to a pail of water. 

Or, for musty floors, use chloride 
of lime, J pound to a pailful of water. 

Spots and Stains.— -Scatter ground 
quartz-stone sand, or marble sand, 
over the stain. Pour over it a strong 
solution of caustic soda or potash at 
the rate of 1 pound to a pint of wa- 
ter, and scrub by means of a stiff 
bristle brush wet in soapsuds. 

Or scour with a mixture of 1 part 
of chloride of lime and 3 parts of 
sand. This vriU bleach the boards 
and destroy vermin. 

To remove whitewash, scrub with 
vinegar and water. 

To remove mold, first scour with 
soap and sand, then sprinkle with 
chloride of lime. Pour on boiling 
water and scrub by means of a stiff 
brush. 

To Remove Grease. — To prevent 
hot grease from sinking into the 
floor, sop cold water on it with a 
cloth to harden it. Scrape off what 
is on the surface with a dull knife. 
Remove the stain Vith a wet cloth 
sprinkled with baking soda. 



HOUSE CLEANING 



277| 



Or mix equal parts of fuller's earth 
or pearlash to a paste with boiling 
water. Cover the grease spot, and 
let stand over night. Scour by means 
of a stiff brush with sand or other 
cleanser. 

Or kill the grease by pouring tur- 
pentine over it and then scour as 
above. 

Or cover the spot with slaked 
lime. Wet the lime and let it stand 
over night. Remove it and wash 
the spot vidth a cloth wet in soda 
and water. 

Or sponge with gasoline, but take 
care not to work near a lighted 
stove. Greasy walls and other wood- 
work may first be rubbed with gaso- 
line to kill the grease before wash- 
ing them. 

Or wash greasy paint with fresh 
slaked lime dUuted to the consist- 
ency of milk. Let dry and rub off. 
Repeat if necessary. 

Or sprinkle a grease spot with 
whiting, fuller's earth, or laundry 
starch. Lay blotting paper or brown 
paper over it and over that a hot 
flatiron. Let stand until cold. Re- 
peat if necessary. 

Or apply a paste of wood ashes 
and soap. Let stand over night, and 
wa«h off with soda and water. Re- 
peat if necessary. 

Or apply sand mixed with chlo- 
ride of lime, and scrub with a stiff 
brush. 

Or scrub with a mixture of pow- 
dered pumice stone and any strong 
washing powder. 

To Remove Ink Spots from 
Floors. — If the ink contains coal-tar 
products, eosin or nigrosine, use a 
strong alkali, as caustic soda or pot- 
ash; otherwise use a strong acid, 
as muriatic acid, vinegar, salts of 
lemon, or oxalic acid diluted with 
water. 

Dissolve a solution of 1 part of 
oxalic acid and 10 parts of boiling 
water. Apply by means of a cloth, 
and afterwards rinse with water con- 
taining sal soda to neutralize the 
acid. 

Or cover the ink spots with a paste 



of chloride of lime moistened with 
water. 

Or scour out the ink spots with a 
solution of 1 part of sulphuric acid in 
20 parts of water, applied by means 
of a stiff scrubbing brush with sand 
and water. Rinse with a strong so- 
lution of ammonia or sal soda in 
water. 

CLEANING FAINT 

To Clean faint. — To clean paint 
and varnish, whiting, fuller's earth, 
cold tea, wood ashes, kerosene, soda, 
ammonia, turpentine, and bran wa- 
ter are all recommended. Do not 
use much soap or washing powders 
containing free alkali to clean paint, 
nor any soap at all to clean varnish. 
Soap tends to streak or to remove 
paint. Keep the water warm, but 
not hot, and change frequently. Use 
a flannel cloth or chamois, as cotton 
and similar goods leave lint, which 
sticks to the paint. 

Or use outing flannel or flannel- 
ette. 

Old underwear makes good wash 
cloths for woodwork. Moisture is 
good for woodwork, and hence it 
should be wiped off once a week 
with a damp cloth, and will be im- 
proved by a thorough washing sev- 
eral times a year. If woodwork is 
too dry, it tends to shrink. Hence -it 
is important to wash woodwork for 
the sake of moisture as well as for 
the sake of cleanliness. Beware of 
recipes which call for soft soap, lye, 
and strong soapsuds to clean paint. 
They will remove the dirt, but in 
time vdll take the paint with it. 

To Clean White Paint and Var- 
nish. — To clean white and other 
delicate colored paints and varnish, 
moisten chamois or flannel cloth 
with warm water, dip it in whiting 
or fuller's earth, and rub over the 
surface gently. This will remove the 
dirt and leave the paint as bright as 
new. Rinse with clear water and 
dry with a soft cloth. 

Fuller's earth is an excellent sub- 
stitute for soap. 



278 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



Or, for white paint, moisten a 
cloth in mUk, dip it in whiting or 
fuller's earth, and apply. 

Or, to wash varnish or delicate 
paint, use cold tea, with or without 
whiting or fuller's earth. Apply 
with flannel and rub until clean. 

Or boU a pound of bran in a gal- 
lon of water and with it wash the 
paint. This will thoroughly clean 
the most delicate surfaces without 
inj uring them. 

To Clean Coftrse Paint. — First go 
over it with a cloth dipped in kero- 
sene to loosen the smoke and grime. 
Then rinse with J teacupful of kero- 
sene in 1 gallon of water, and wipe 
dry with a soft cloth. 

Or mix baking soda with water 
to form a thin paste. Smear the 
paint with this and wipe ojSf with a 
cloth wrung out of clear warm wa- 
ter. Cover a small surface at a 
time and remove the soda before it 
dries. 

Or wet a cloth in strong soda and 
water, wash the paint quickly, rinse 
with clear water, and dry at once. 
This should not be used on varnish 
or delicate paint. The cloth should 
be damp rather than wet. 

Or mix 1 tablespoonful of am- 
monia with 1 quart or more of 
warm water for coarse or dirty 
woodwork. This saves labor and 
takes off the dirt, but should not be 
used on varnish or delicate painted 
surfaces. 

Or dissolve 1 bar of hard white 
soap in 1 gallon of boiling water. 
Add 1 tablespoonful each of sal 
soda and saltpeter and 2 tablespoon- 
fuls of ammonia. Bottle and cork 
tightly for future use. 

Or mix 1 quart of sweet oil vrith 

1 pint of turpentine and apply. 

To Polish Woodwork. — Mix equal 
parts of lard oil and turpentine, or 

2 parts of sweet oil to 1 part of 
turpentine, and rub the woodwork 
lightly with a cloth saturated with 
the mixture. This may be used on 
any painted surface after washing. 

To Remove Smoke Stains. — To re- 
move smoke stains, wet a cloth, dip 



it into very fine sifted wood or coal 
ashes, and scour the paint clean. 

To Remove Katch Stains. — ^To re- 
move the marks left by scratching 
matches on paint, rub gently with a 
slice of fresh lemon and rinse with 
clear water, using a soft cloth. 

To Remove Paint. — Detergents 
recommended for removing paint 
from woodwork are turpentine, ben- 
zine, gasoline, chloroform, oxalic 
acid, ether, alcohol, caustic potash, 
sal soda, and quicklime. When paint 
begins to check, it indicates that its 
ingredients were impure, and it must 
be removed. 

To soften the paint, apply with a 
paint brush wood alcohol, spirits of 
turpentine, benzine, or a strong so- 
lution of equal parts of oxalic acid 
and water. Any of these wiQ soften 
the paint so that it can be wiped off 
with a coarse cloth or scrubbed 
away. Repeat as often as necessary. 

Or, if these do not soften the 
paint, apply chloroform, either alone 
or mixed with an equal quantity of 
spirits of anunonia. Moisten only a 
small surface, and scrape off the 
paint while moist before proceeding 
farther. 

Or slake 3 pounds of quicklime, 
add 1 pound of potash, and dilute 
with water to the consistency of 
cream. Apply with a paint brush 
and let stand over night. Remove 
by washing the surface with a flan- 
nel cloth or mop dipped in a strong 
solution of sal soda and ammonia. 

Or scrub with a stiff scrubbing 
brush. 

Or dissolve a bar of hard yellow 
soap in twice its bulk of water. 
When cool, add 1 tablespoonful of 
potash lye and i cupful of kerosene. 
Before the mixture sets, apply to 
the woodwork with a paint brush. 
After 34 hours apply a strong so- 
lution of sal soda with a scrubbing 
brush. 

Or paint may be burned off by 
going over the surface with a flat 
flame produced by a regular lamp 
made for that purpose, called a 
"paint burner." 



HOUSE CLEANING 



279 



Or apply, a red-hot iron. Take 
care to remove the paint as soon as 
it is soft and before the wood is 
charred or burned. 

To Bemove Putty. — Go over tlie 
surface of the putty with a red-hot 
poker or other iron, taking care not 
to burn or char the woodwork. The 
putty can then be peeled off with a 
blunt knife blade. 

Or with a brush apply a paste 
made of soap jelly containing caus- 
tic potash or soda. 

Or apply dilute sulphuric, nitric, 
or muriatic acid with a brush. But 
if any of these soaks into the wood- 
work, it tends to rot the frames. 
Hence burning is the better method. 

To Destroy the Odor of Faint. — 
FiU a paU partly full of hay and 
pour over it boiling water. Let it 
stand in the room which has been 
painted. 

WHITEWASHIITG 

Before applying whitewash, go over 
the wall or ceiling with a brush or 
dust cloth to remove dust, and wash 
with clear water. Fill all cracks and 
broken places with new plaster. Cut 
away the edges of broken places to 
make a square edge. Fill small cracks 
and bre^s with plaster of Paris. 
Do not apply whitewash until the 
surface is quite dry. Give two or 
more coats as needed. 

To Prepare Whitewash. — The prin- 
cipal ingredients in various kinds of 
whitewash are slaked lime, whiting, 
Paris white or sulphate of baryta, 
oxide and sulphate of zinc, alum, 
sugar, rice and wheat flour, and glue 
mixed with milk or water. These 
ingredients are used in various com- 
binations. The addition of a little 
bluing will make a clearer white, 
and a small amount of salt assists 
by making the whitewash stick bet- 
ter. 

The following mixtures are recom- 
mended: 

Dissolve 2 ounces of fresh slaked 
lime in a small amount of milk to 
the consistency of cream. Add suf- 



ficient milk to make 8 quarts and 
stir in slowly 5 pounds of whiting. 
Mix the whole mass thoroughly by 
beating with a wooden spoon or an 
egg beater. For a clear white, add 
a little bluing. For a cream color, 
add a small amount of ocher, or tint 
with any other coloring matter as 
desired. 

Or mix 4 potmds of Spanish whit- 
ing with cold water to the consist- 
ency of milk. Dissolve 2 ounces of 
pure white glue in hot water over a 
slow fire, and pour it into the whit- 
ing in a thin stream while hot, stir- 
ring thoroughly. 

Or slake a sufficient amount of 
lime in water to make a pailful of 
whitewash, and while still hot stir in 
a pint of flour boiled with water to 
form a thin cooked starch. Stir well 
and dilute with hot water to the 
right consistency. 

Or prepare a wash of slaked lime 
in a pail or tub and strain through 
cheese cloth. Mix 4 ounces of whit- 
ing or pulverized burnt alum, 3 
pounds of sugar, and 2 quarts of 
rice flour with hot water and bring 
to a boil, stirring constantly. Add 
this mixture to 1 pailful of sifted 
lime wash. Add also 1 pound of 
best white glue dissolved in boiling 
water over a slow fire. This is a very 
briUiant and durable wash and will 
last for many years. 

Or slake 8 quarts of lime, and add 
1 pound of sulphate of zinc and i 
poimd of common salt dissolved in 
water. This is a hard, firm wash 
that will not crack. 

Or mix 6 pounds of Paris white 
with cold water to form a paste, and 
dilute with hot water to the consist- 
ency of milk. Stir in 4 ounces of the 
best white glue dissolved in boiling 
water over a slow fire. This is a 
cheap wash and gives a fine, bril- 
liant surface. 

To Color Whitewash. — For a fine 
clear white, add a little bluing. 

For a reddish pink, add Spanish 
brown. 

For a red stone color, mix com- 
mon clay with Spanish brown. 



280 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



For yellow, add yellow ocher (or 
chrome yellow, which 'goes farther 
and makes a better shade). 

For gray or lead color, add lamp- 
black. 

For cream color, yellow ocher. 

For stone color, 3 parts each of 
umber and lampblack. 

For fawn color, 4 parts of umber, 
2 parts of Indian red, and 1 part of 
lampblack. 

Do not use green with whitewash. 

The quantity of coloring matter 
required depends upon the amount 
of whitewash and the warmth of the 
tint desired, and must be deter- 
mined by experiment, but approxi- 
mately two or three pounds to a 
pailful of wash wUl be advisable. 

Whitewash for Outdoor Use. — To 
make a good whitewash for fences, 
outbuildings, barns, stucco, and oth- 
er surfaces exposed to the weather, 
slake 12 quarts of lime in a tight 
cask or barrel. Cover with canvas 
to keep in the steam. Strain through 
a large piece of cheese cloth or a 
fine sieve and add 3 quarts of coarse 
salt and 2 gallons of water. Bring 
this to a boil and skim off any im- 
purities. Stir in 3 pounds of potash, 
8 quarts of fine sand, and coloring 
matter as desired. This wash may 
be applied to wood, brick, or stone, 
looks as good as paint, and is weath- 
erproof, fireproof, and very durable. 
It is an excellent preservative for 
shingle roofs and walls. 

Or slake 8 quarts of lime in a 
tight cask or barrel, strain, and add 
2 quarts of salt dissolved in hot wa- 
ter. Add boiling starch made of 2 
poimds of rice flour. First mix the 
starch with cold water to a thin 
paste, dilute with hot water, and boil 
the mixture 16 minutes. Stir in 
while boiling hot. ' Then stir in 4 
ounces of powdered whiting and 8 
ounces of best white glue dissolved 
in hot water over a slow fire. Dilute 
with 3 gallons of hot water, stir vig- 
orously, cover, and let stand 3 or 4 
days. This mixture should cover 24 
to 36 square yards of wood, brick, 
or stone. It may be used instead 



of oil paints, is much cheaper, and 
will last for years. It should be 
applied hot, which may be done by 
using a portable furnace or by sus- 
pending a kettle over a camp fire by 
means of three poles in the form of 
a tripod. 

Or slake 8 quarts of lime, strain, 
and add 1 pound of dissolved glue 
and 1 or 2 quarts of boiled linseed 
oil. Dilute with water. 

Or dissolve in hot water 4 quarts 
of water lime, 4 quarts of fresh- 
slaked lime, 4 pounds of powdered 
yeUow ocher, and 4 pounds of burnt 
umber. This gives a rich cream col- 
or for fences, outhouses, and barns. 

Wash for Bricks. — To make a 
wash for red brick walls, dissolve 3 
ounces of glue in 1 gallon of water 
over a slow fire. Soaking the glue 
for a day or two beforehand will 
make it dissolve more quickly. Bring 
the glue to a boil and stir in 1 
tablespoonful of powdered alum, i 
pound of Venetian red, and 1 pound 
of Spanish brown. Or vary these 
proportions according to taste. Mix 
and apply with a brush. 

To Prepare Calcimine. — Dissolve 
with boiling water in separate ket- 
tles 10 pounds of Spanish whiting, 
8 ovmces of white glue, and 8 ounces 
of powdered alum. Use in each case 
enough water to make a thin cream. 
Pour together, stirring vigorously, 
strain through cheese cloth, and add 
1 teaspoonful of bluing. Apply while 
warm. Add coloring matter to suit, 
and dilute with soap jelly to the 
right consistency. Remove paper, if 
any, wash off old calcimine or lime, 
fill holes or cracks with plaster of 
Paris, and apply a sizing of glue or 
shellac. 

Mix calcimine with any coloring 
matter desired and apply the same- 
as whitewash. 

Blue Wash for Walls and Ceil- 
ings.— Dissolve 1 pound of blue vit- 
riol and 8 ounces of whiting in 3 
quarts of water. Boil with gentle 
heat 2 or 3 hours, stirring fre- 
quently. Remove from the fire, stir, 
and allow to cool. Pour the liquor 



HOUSE CLEANING 



from the sediment, mix the latter 
with 1 ounce of common glue dis- 
solved in 1 gallon of water, and ap- 
ply with a brush. 

To Faint Frescoes. — To paint in 
fresco consists in applying colors 
not injured by lime to the fresh 
mortar, stucco, or plaster while still 
damp. The advantage of this sort 
of painting is that it incorporates 
with the mortar, dries with it, and 
is very durable. Frescoes may be 
applied in any design, free hand or 
by means of stencil. Or the walls 
may be painted in fresco with tints 
or solid colors. 

Glazing for Frescoes. — ^To protect 
frescoes, dilute paraffin with benzol, 
and apply a thin coating with a 
brush. 

PAPEB HANGING 

To Remove Wall Paper. — To pre- 
pare a waU for fresh treatment, 
whether by painting, calcimining, or 
hanging fresh paper, first remove 
any paper that may be on the waUs. 
Never lay one paper over another. 
The germ of disease, eggs of ver- 
min, and other obnoxious matter are 
not to be gotten rid of by thisi. proc- 
ess. Wet the walls with boiling wa- 
ter applied with a whitewash brush, 
and remove the paper with a hand 
scraper or a large case knife or 
wide-bladed putty knife. Do not al- 
low the scrapings to harden on the 
floor, as when dry they are very dif- 
ficult to remove. After the paper is 
off, wash down the waUs with pure 
water or strong soda water or vine- 
gar and water applied with a large 
sponge or brush. Let them dry thor- 
oughly before treating. 

To Bepair Plaster. — To repair 
cracks formed in plaster by the set- 
tling of new houses, the sagging of 
old houses, the decay of ceilings and 
floor timbers, and accidental breaks 
in the plaster, first cut away the 
edges of the cracks or breaks with a 
sharp knife. Make the edge straight 
or slightly slanting in. Then fill 
with plaster of Paris mixed with 



water, to which may be added vine- 
gar, flour paste, or sand. 

Or fill with paper pulp moistened 
with glue. 

To mend small breaks, mix plaster 
of Paris with cold water and apply 
quickly with a case knife, smoothing 
the plaster as you apply it. Mix 
a small quantity at a time and work 
quickly, as the plaster hardens very 
fast. 

Or to prevent plaster of Paris 
from hardening quickly, when repair- 
ing larger breaks that take more 
material and more time, mix 1 table- 
spoonful of plaster of Paris with 3 
or 3 tablespoonfuls of fine sand and 
dilute with vinegar. The more vine- 
gar used, the slower the plaster will 
set. 

Or mix plaster of Paris with an 
equal quantity of cold flour paste. 

Or to mend large cracks and breaks, 
soak bits of wall paper to a pulp 
with water, squeeze out the water, 
and mix to a stiff paste or jell with 
thin size or ghie made by dissolving 
1 ounce of good glue in 1 pint of hot 
water over a slow fire. Pour the 
whole on cheese cloth to remove the 
excess of water. Press the paper 
pulp into the cracks and holes in the 
plaster with a putty knife. But do 
not quite fill the crack to the surface 
of the plaster, as the pulp does not 
admit of a smooth surface. When 
nearly dry, smooth the surface with 
plaster of Paris and let dry before 
tinting or repapering. The paper 
pulp when hard is as strong as wood, 
and cracks filled in this manner will 
never reopen. 

Size for Paper Hanging. — To pre- 
pare walls for paper hanging, first 
remove old paper, mend cracks and 
breaks, and wash down the walls 
with a cloth or sponge wet in warm 
water. Then apply with a whitewash 
brush a solution of 4 ounces of com- 
mon glue dissolved in 1 gallon of 
boiling water over a slow fire. Or 
apply a good shellac size. 

Paste for Paper Hanging. — See 
" Adhesives " elsewhere in this vol- 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



To Hang Wall Paper. — First trim 
close to the pattern the plain strip on 
one edge of the paper, but not the 
other. Next measure the height of the 
room by holding an end of the paper 
up to the ceiling and marking along 
the baseboard with any blunt instru- 
ment. Cut along this mark and use 
the first strip as a pattern. Cut a 
sufficient number of additional strips 
for the plain walls, making allowances 
for doors and windows. Lay tlie strips 
face down on a large table, or make 
a suitable bench by laying old boards 




"Lay the Strips on a Table." 



across a couple of chair backs or bar- 
rels. Apply the paste with a white- 
wash brush. If the paper is heavy, 
let it lie after pasting until it is slight- 
ly soaked with the paste, or until the 
surface is sticky rather than wet. 
Commence at a door or window and 
place the close-cut edge against the 
frame. First press the upper end 
against the ceiling and press down- 
ward with a clean cloth. Place the 
next strip so that the close-cut edge 
wUl overUe the half-inch strip left 
upon the first strip, and so proceed 
until the room is finished. 

But remember that aE' heavy-weight 
papers in solid colors, as ingrain, du- 
plex, or cartridge papers, and most 
cloth or fabric wall coverings, must 
be "butted" rather than overlapped. 
That is, the edges must be placed dose 
enough together to cover the wall, but 
without overlapping each other. 

To fit around doors, window cas- 



ings, and other jogs, cut and paste a 
fuU strip, apply it to the wall at the 
ceiling, and press with a cloth down 
to the lop of the door or window 
frame and along the side of the ad- 
jacent wall. Press carefully up to 
the frame and cut along the edge 
vrith a sharp knife to take out the 
section of paper which comes over the 
door or window. It will assist to clip 
diagonally with shears toward the 
corner of the opening, taking care 
not to clip too far, although the di- 
agonal clipping, if it extends into the 
paper on the wall, may be concealed 
by carefully bringing the edg^ to- 
gether. 

To Paper a Boagh Wall. — To paper 
old walls of boards, planks, or wains- 
coting without plaster, or sanded waUs 
that have not been "skimmed" with 
plaster or lime, or other rough sur- 
faces, it may be necessary to first 
hang a layer of cotton cloth to furnish 
a smooth surface on which to hang 
paper. The difficulty of hangipg paper 
on a rough surface is that the paper, 
being stiff, does not yield to the de- 
pressions in the wall. Hence air 
spaces are left that cause the paper 
to blister and peel off. The advan- 
tages of using cloth are that it is 
flexible, that it takes up more paste 
than paper does, and hence that it 
adheres more closely to the wedl. It 
affords a smooth and suitable surface 
on which to hang paper, and gives the 
final result a good appearance. First 
go over rough surfaces with sand- 
paper. Tack this to a large block of 
wood, into which, to avoid using a 
stepladder, insert an old broom han- 
dle. 

Next apply liberally to the walls 
hot boUed flour or other suitable paste 
containing a tablespoonful of borax 
to each gallon of water. Cover with 
paste one strip at a time, and immedi- 
ately hang on the wet wall any suit- 
able cotton stuff. Unbleached cotton 
sheeting or cheese cloth answers this 
purpose; or old sheets, pillowcases, 
and the like may be utilized. After 
hanging the cloth, brush it down with 
a whitewash brush dipped in the hot 



HOUSE CLEANING 



283 



paste, and allow it to dry. Then hang 
the wall paper in the usual manner. 

To Paint Rough Walls. — To obtain 
a suitable surface for painting or tint- 
ing in colors on rough boards, sanded 
walls, stuccb, or other rough surfaces, 
first apply a layer of cotton cloth as 
above and hang a cheap, light-colored 
wall paper. When dry, pare- off with 
a potato knife the seams in the paper 
caused by overlapping the edges, run- 
ning the sharp edge down the seam 
from top to bottom, or use carefully 
an old razor for this purpose. Apply, 
two or three coats of paint and white 
varnish alternately, allowing one to 
dry before putting on the next. The 
varnish will prevent the paint from 
becoming soiled, and the surface will 
last a lifetime. 

To Paint a Whitewashed Wall. — 
Scrape off the loose Ume with any 
blunt-edged tool. A hoe is convenient. 
Go over the wall with sandpaper tacked 
to a large block of wood and fastened 
to a handle. Wash with a sponge to 
remove the lime and let dry. Fill 
cracks and breaks with plaster of 
Paris. They wiU be concealed by the 
paint. Do not use putty for this pur- 
pose, as that when dry would have a 
different-looking surface. Apply one 
or two coats of shellac or glue size, 3 
or 4 ounces of either to a gallon of 
boiling water. Cover with any suit- 
able paint and varnish. 

CASE OF WALLS 

To Glean Wall Paper. — Brush down 
the walls with a hairbrush or dust 
cloth, then cut a loaf of yeast bread 
two or three days old once vertically 
through the middle, and again cross- 
wise. Hold these pieces by the crust 
and rub the wall downward with long, 
light strokes. Do not rub across the 
paper, or rub harder than is neces- 
sary. An ordinary coarse grater held 
in the left hand will be found con- 
venient to rub off the surface of the 
bread as it becomes soUed. Clean thor- 
oughly as you go. 

Or make a stiff dough of rye flour 
and water and apply in the same man- 



ner. The dough should be stiff enough 
not to stick to the hands or to the 
paper. Take a piece as large as the 
fist, dip it in dry corn meal, and use 
untU it becomes soiled. Change as 
often as necessary. 

Or make a similar stiff dough of 
wheat flour and water. Afterwards 
brush down the walls with a clean soft 
brush or dust cloth to remove the 
crumbs. 

To Remove Grease from Wall Paper. 
— To remove grease and oil stains 
from wall paper, fold a piece of 
blotting paper, and in the fold 
spread pipe clay or French chalk. 
Stitch or pin the edges together to 
keep the chalk from falling out. Lay 
this over the grease spot and apply a 
hot iron, taking care not to scorch 
the paper. Change the blotting paper 
occasionally, and, if, necessary, repeat 
with a fresh iron. 

Or make a thick paste of powdered 
pipe clay or French chalk and apply 
it to the spot with a brush. Let it re- 
main until dry. Then brush off and 
repeat if necessary. 

To Dust Walls. — To remove dust 
from walls, use a clean hairbrush or 
window brush with a suitable handle. 
Brush from the top downward. 

Or make a bag to cover the head 
of the broom. 

Or draw a sleeve or leg of a suit 
of old knit underwear over the head 
of the broom. Put the broom handle 
through the large part and draw it 
well down over the broom. The down- 
ward motion of the broom on the wall 
wiU hold the cloth tightly in place. 

Or crumple an old paper bag in the 
hands, but without tearing it, and slip 
it over the head of the broom. This 
can be removed and burned after 
using. 

Or insert into a clean mop handle 
a suitable dust cloth, as several thick- 
nesses of cheese cloth or discarded 
cotton or woolen underwear, and sweep 
down the walls with this. 

To Mend Wall Paper. — To patch a 
spot knocked out of the wall paper, 
or holes in exposed cracks or edges, 
take a. piece of paper to match the 



284 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



pattern aiid expose to the sun until 
it, fades to the same shade. Cut a 
patch £in inch or two larger than the 
brokfen place, lay it face down on a 
piece of glass, moisten it with a suit- 
able paste, and when moist scrape or 
pare the edge with a sharp knife or 
old razor to a very fine slant or bevel. 

Lay on a fresh coat of paste, es- 
pecially around the edge, and apply 
the patch so as to match the design. 
Rub the edges down with gentle strokes 
of a soft cloth, and if done skillfully 
the patch wiU not be noticeable. 

Or, if spots are too small to patch, 
obtain, for a few cents, a child's box 
of water colors, mix the colors to ob- 
tain the right shade, and paint the 
spots with a small camel's-hair brush. 
A 2S-cent box of colors wiU last 
a long time, and a little practice 
will enable anyone to match the colors 
and keep the wall paper in good order. 
Faded spots left on solid-colored wall 
papers by the removal of pictures may 
be renovated by painting them with 
dyestuff. Select a color as near that 
of the paper as possible, follow the 
directions that come with the dye, and 
apply to the wall with a brush. Care 
must be taken not to let the dye drip 
on floor coverings or furniture. When 
first applied, the painted spot wUl be 
darker than the rest, but it wiU quick- 
ly dry to its proper tint or shade. 

To Clean Calcimiued Walls. — Rub 
on corn meal with a coarse cloth, or 
moisten a soft cloth or sponge in aqua 
ammonia and rub spots very lightly. 

To RenoTate Blackened Walls. — A 
smoked or blackened ceiling or wall 
may be cleaned by means of a cloth 
wrung out of a strong solution of 
baking soda and water. Or use vine- 
gar and water. If the stain is not all 
removed, dissolve gum shellac in alco- 
hol to the consistency of milk or 
cream and with it cover the sooty 
parts. Paint or whitewash over the 
shellac. The black will not show 
through. 

To Dry Walls that Are Damp.— If 
there is much dampness in a room 
that is not commonly heated, it may 
cause the walls to mold or mildew, be- 



sides being unhealthy. To absorb the 
dampness, place unslaked lime in fiat, 
open vessels, as dripping pans, plates, 
or saucers. Lime has an affinity for 
dampness and also purifies the air. 
Renew the lime as fast as it becomes 
air-slaked and crumbles into a fine, 
dry powder. 

Walls are often damp for no ap- 
parent cause. Brick and other porous 
walls may hold moisture, or it may 
work up from springs through the 
foundations of brick or stone houses. 
The causes should be sought and, if 
possible, removed. 

To prepare damp walls for cal- 
cimine or paper, make a size of 1 
ounce of glue to 1 gallon of water, 
and add 4 ounces of alum and 4 ounces 
of boiled linseed oil. Apply one or 
two coats and let dry before paper- 
ing. 

Or apply with a whitewash brush, 
during summer when the wall is dryer, 
a solution of 1 pound of castUe or 
other hard white soap in 1 gallon of 
water. Let stand a day or two 
to dry. Follow with a second coat of 
i pound of alum in a pailful of water, 
and let dry before papering. 

Or, if the walls are very damp, ap- 
ply thin sheet lead or tin foil to the 
walls with a suitable cement. Or 
fasten with flat-headed copper tacks. 
These may be driven into the damp 
spots only or, if necessary, into the 
entire wall. Afterwards paper. 

To Bemove Mold from Walls. — ^To 
remove mold or mildew from walls or 
ceilings, apply with a whitewash brush 
a solution of 1 pound of chloride of 
Ume dissolved in a pailful of water. 

To prevent dampness when build- 
ing, after the walls are a few feet 
above the ground lay a row of stone 
or brick with a mixture of tar pitch 
and fine sand in place of mortar. 

WINDOWS, DOOBS, ETC. 

To Clean Windows. — Do not use 
soapsuds on windows. The soap ad- 
heres and requires a good deal of 
rinsing to remove. The easiest way 
to clean windows is with a chamois 



HOUSE CLEANING 



285 



or clean cloth and clear water. Wring 
out the chamois or cloth so as to be 
wet but not dripping, and wash the 
windows clean. Afterwards wring dry 
and go over them again. Finally pol- 
ish with a dry cloth or chamois. Rinse 




Clean Windows wUh a Chamois.' 



the cloth and change the water as 
often as necessary. 

Or, if the windows are much soiled, 
use a little washing soda, but do not 
let water containing soda drip or stain 
the paint on the sash. Wash one pane 
at a time and wipe with a dry cloth. 
Or add a, little gasoline to the water. 
This cleans quickly and gives a high 
polish. 

Or add 1 tablespoonful of kerosene 
or ammonia to 1 quart of water. 

Or, if the windows are not much 
soiled, wet them with a soft cloth 
dampened with kerosene or ammonia 
water, and wipe with a dry cloth. 

Or mix a little dry stardi with cold 
water to the consistency of cream, 
and wash the windows with this, leav- 
ing it to dry on. When dry, rub it off 
with a damp newspaper. This gives 
a high polish without lint or streaks. 

To Remove Paint. — To remove paint 
spots from windows, soften them with 
hot, strong vinegar, and rub a copper 



or silver coin over them to loosen the 
paint. 

To Bemove Putty. — To remove put- 
ty, go over it with a red-hot poker or 
other hot iron, taking care not to 
touch the paint on the window sashes. 
When the putty is hot, slip a dull 
knife blade between it and the wood- 
work and it will readily come off. 
Any other method that will remove 
putty is likely to injure the paint on 
the sashes. 

Or apply two or three coats of par- 
affin oil by means of a small brush, 
allowing each coat a half hour or more 
to penetrate before the next one is 
applied. 

Or apply soft soap freely by means 
of a brush. In a short time the hard- 
ened linseed oil is dissolved, making 
the putty plastic, so that it can be 
readily removed. 

Window Corners. — Use a whisk 
broom to dig out the corners of the 
window sash, or use wings of turkeys, 
geese, or chickens. These are also 
good to wash windows, as they are 
free from dust and lint. 

Or use a piece of whalebone or a 
skewer to clean out the corners of the 
sash. 

To Pplish Windows. — Polish win- 
dows with dry chamois or tissue paper 
or an old newspaper slightly mois- 
tened. 

Or apply with a moistened rag pow- 
dered indigo, pumice stone, or fuller's 
earth, and polish. 

Or fold a piece of cheese cloth and 
put a quantity of pulverized pumice 
stone between the folds, stitching 
around the edge to keep the powder 
from spilling. Polish chimneys and 
window panes with this prepared cloth. 
It gives a high polish instantly, and 
will last a long time. 

Or with a soft cloth rub a little 
vinegar on the glass. Rub dry and 
polish. 

To Prevent Windows from Steam- 
ing. — After cleaning the glass, rub 
over it a rag slightly moistened with 
glycerin. 

Windows — To Keep Out the Sun. — 
Make a paste of powdered gum traga- 



286 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



canth and white of egg. Beat with an 
egg beater and let it stand twenty- 
four hours. Apply with a soft brush 
and let dry. 

To Clean Mirrors. — Mix a little 
powdered bluing, whiting, or pumice 
stone with alcohol to form a thin 
paste. Smear the surface of the mir- 
ror with this by means of a small 
sponge or soft rag, and before the al- 
cohol evaporates rub it dry with a 
clean cloth. Afterwards polish with 
silk, chamois, or tissue paper. 

Or wring a cloth or chamois out of 
clear water, dip in dry whiting, and 
apply. Rub with a dry cloth or cham- 
ois and polish. 

Or apply whiting mixed with tea to 
form a thin paste. Use clear tea to 
remove stains. 

Or wring a newspaper as you would 
a cloth out of cold water, so that it 
will be damp but not wet. Rub the 
glass with this, and afterwards dry 
with a fresh newspaper softened by 
crumpling it in the hands. 

To Polish Mirrors. — Use a dry 
chamois or pumice bag, or a silk hand- 
kerchief, or tissue paper, or apply 
powdered chalk or whiting with any 
of these. Or use a dry cloth slightly 
moistened with a few drops of aqua 
ammonia. 

To Support Window Sashes. — To 
support window sashes not provided 
with sash lines and pulleys, obtain a 
nmhber of ordinary bottle corks and 
a bit or an auger of the same size. 
Bore three or four holes in the side 
of the sash and insert a piece of cork 
in each of these, letting it project 
just enough to rub against the groove 
of the window frame. The elasticity 
of the corks will admit of the window 
being raised, but the pressure wiQ be 
sufficient to support the sash at any 
desired height. Renew the corks as 
often as necessary. 

To Lubricate Window Sashes. — To 
lubricate a window sash that rubs or 
swells in damp weather so that it can- 
not be raised and lowered readily, 
slush freely with common yellow soap 
the edge of the sash and the groove in 
which it runs. This may be done by 



moistening the soap and rubbing it 
over the parts, or by dissolving the 
soap in its own bulk of water, and 
applying the soap jeUy with a brush. 

Or use a wax candle instead of 
soap. 

To Prevent Window "Sashes from 
Rattling. — A half of a clothespin will 
cure temporarily the rattling of a 
window sash. 

To Restore Window Glass. — ^To re- 
store the transparency of window 
glass that has become dingy by ex- 
posure to the elements, rub with di- 
lute muriatic acid, 1 part of acid to 
10 parts of water, and polish with a 
moist cloth dipped in whiting. 

To Keep Doors Open. — Cover a com- 
mon red brick with cretonne, carpet, 
or any suitable material to match 
the floor covering, and have a number 
of these weights about the house to 
place against the doors and keep them 
open. 

To Prevent Doors from Creaking. 
— Dip a feather in oil and apply to 
the hinges. 

Or rub on a piece of soap. 

Or mix equal parts of soap, lard, 
and black lead, and apply with the 
point of a lead pencil or in melted 
form by means of a small brush. 

Burglar-proof Lock. — Lock the 
door, leave the key in the lock, and 
keep it there by means of a heavy 
copper wire 11 inches long bent in 
the shape of a hairpin. Put this over 
the spindle back of the knob, with 
the ends down through the head of the 
key. The key cannot then be pushed 
out or turned by a burglar's tool or 
another key inserted from the out- 
side. This is a convenient device for 
a traveler to use in hotels, where du- 
plicate keys are often issued to ser- 
vants and others. 

Or one end of the wire may be fas- 
tened to the casement by means of a 
staple, and the other end formed into 
a hook to hold the key in position. 

Or an ordinary hook may be used 
for this purpose. 

Skeleton Key. — Obtain from a lock- 
smith a skeleton key similar to the 
keys used by burglars and furnished 



HOUSE CLEANING 



287 



to employees of hotels whose duties 
require them to have admission to all 
the rooms. This will be exceedingly 
convenient when other keys are lost 
or mislaid. 

To Tit Keys.-^To fit an old key or 
a blank to replace a key that has been 
lost, hold the key to be fitted in the 
flame of a candle imtU it is thorough- 
ly blackened, insert it carefully in the 
lock, and turn it until it strikes the 
wards. Withdraw the key and file 
away the parts where the soot has 
been rubbed off by the wards. 

CLEAirarG AND CAEE OF FTJEHITUEE 

To Clean rnrniture. — Furniture, 
like other woodwork, tends to shrink 
if it becomes too dry, and should be 
washed for the sake of moisture as 
well as for the sake of cleanliness. 
Hence furniture, besides being cleaned, 
when necessary, with suitable cleans- 
ing compounds, should be sponged oc- 
casionally with clear water and vnped 
dry. « 

But do not use soap or washing 
powders on painted or varnished fur- 
niture. Remove dirt, dust, and stains 
with other cleansing agents, and rinse 
by sponging with clear water. Wipe 
dry, oil, and polish. Detergents recom- 
mended for cleaning, furniture, re- 
moving finger marks, white spots, and 
stains are olive, sweet, linseed, paraf- 
fin, and otlier oils; whiting, fuller's 
earth, cold tea, kerosene, turpentine, 
soda, essence of peppermint, camphor, 
asphaltum, vinegar, various acids, and 
combinations of these. 

To Wash Furniture. — To wash fur- 
niture, use a large sponge, wipe dry, 
and polish dry as possible with a 
chamois skin wrung out of clear water, 
or with a soft flannel cloth. Do not 
use dry chamois on varnished wood 
or polished surfaces. Wipe always in 
one direction, preferably with the grain 
of the wood. 

Wash carved wood with a stiff hair 
paint brush dipped in clear water. 

Or wash with cold tea applied vidth 
a sponge or brush, wipe dry, oil, and 
polish. 



Care of Furniture. — To keep pol- 
ished or varnished furniture in good 
order, each article should be gone 
over lightly once a week on cleaning 
day with clear hot (not boiling) water 
without soap, or with cold tea, or any 
other suitable cleanser. 

Or, if there is not time for this, af- 
ter dusting the furniture, rub it over 
with a cloth moistened with kerosene, 
turpentine, cold tea, or cold-drawn 
linseed oil, or with a mixture of equal 
parts of these. This practice will as- 
sist in keeping it in good order. 

To Kemove Finger Marks. — Mois- 
ten a flannel cloth in olive, linseed, 
sweet, or paraffin oU to remove the 
spots. Wipe dry, and polish with flan- 
nel or a chamois skin wrung out of 
clear water. For oiled furniture use 
kerosene. 

To Remove White Marks. — To re- 
move white marks on furniture caused 
by heat or water, hold a hot iron near 
them, but not near enough to burn or 
scorch. 

Or rub with a cloth moistened with 
kerosene. 

Or with a cloth apply equal parts 
of linseed oil and alcohol. 

Or, if the stain is obstinate, cover 
with baking soda and hold a. hot iron 
close to the spot, taking care not to 
scorch or burn the wood. Repeat if 
necessary. 

Or apply olive oil or sweet oil, and 
polish with 9 cloth moistened in al- 
cohol. 

Or apply essence of peppermint 
with a cloth. Wipe dry and polish. 

Or use a mixture composed of equal 
parts of vinegar, sweet oil, and tur- 
pentine. 

Or rub with a cloth wet in spirits 
of camphor or camphorated oil or 
turpentine. 

Or use a cloth saturated with any 
of these. 

After using any of the above, wipe 
the spot dry, apply furniture oil, and 
polish with damp chamois or silk or 
linen cloth. Do not allow alcohol, 
turpentine, camphor, or similar de- 
tergents to remain on a polished sur- 
face. 



288 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



To Bemove Ink Stains. — To remove 
Ink stains, first test the ink by ap- 
plying water to see if it contains coal- 
tar products, as eosin or nigrosine. 
If these are present the ink when wet 
will run. In that case use an alkali, 
as baking soda mixed with water to 
form a paste, and let it dry on. Re- 
peat if necessary. 

Or, if water does not cause the ink 
to run, it is probably an iron-gall or 
logwood ink; hence apply an acid, 
preferably oxalic acid, dissolved in 
an equal quantity of water. Saturate 
a cloth with the solution and lay it on 
the spot to soften the ink. Then -wash 
with the solution until the ink disap- 
pears. 

Or apply salts of lemon. 

Or a mixture of 6 parts of spirits 
of salt (diluted hydrochloric acid) 
and 1 part of salts of lemon. 

Or use 1 part of nitric, muriatic, 
or sulphuric acid diluted with 10 parts 
of water. Apply by dipping a cork 
in the mixture and touching the stain, 
or by means of a feather. 

But remember that all of these acids 
are poisotious, and that all except ox- 
alic acid will burn or blister the skin. 
Also, if used in too great strength, 
they will remove paint and varnish 
and themselves stain the surfaces they 
are applied to. Hence use no more 
acid than is necessary and immedi- 
ately sponge off with clear water con- 
taining a little ammonia, wipe dry, 
oil, and polish. 

To Remove Braises from Turniture. 
— To renovate furniture that has been 
bruised or scratched without injuring 
the fiber of the wood, apply moisture 
and heat. Wet a cloth in warm water, 
not hot, and lay it over the parts. 
Hold near a hot iron, but not near 
enough to scorch or char the wood. 
Repeat until the bruise comes up. If 
the varnish is discolored, apply any 
of the above remedies. 

Or use, instead of cloth, several 
thicknesses of brown paper moistened 
in water. 

Or, if the bruise is small, omit the 
cloth or paper. Wet the spot and 
hold near it a hot iron. Then lay over 



the scratched or bruised surface a 
cloth dipped in linseed oil. Finally 
rub with a mixture of equal parts of 
turpentine and linseed oil, and polish. 
Oils for Wood Furniture. — Furni- 
ture polish containing oil or wax will 
not be needed if the- wood is washed 
occasionally with clear warm water, 
not hot, without soap, and rubbed 
dry with chamois or a soft cloth. 
But if furniture polish containing 




Oil Musi Be Rubbed In." 



fixed oils is used the furniture must 
be rubbed vigorously and kept in 
condition by daily rubbing to pre- 
vent oU accumulating so as to be felt 
or seen. Furniture oil should be 
sparingly used and the wood rubbed 
to a high polish or imtil it does not 
have any greasy feel. 

Soap for Furniture. — Soap should 
not be used on wood finished with 
shellac or varnish or treated with 
furniture wax or oU. Soap has the 
property of destroying oily and resi- 
nous substances, and thus tends to 
eat away the coating, destroy the 
polish, and expose the wood. 

To Remove Furniture Scratches. 
— Go over the articles with a soft 
rag dampened in kerosene oil. This 
will cause all light scratches or sur- 
face bruises to disappear. 

Or, if the scratches or cracks are 
deep, melt a little beeswax, and thin 



HOUSE CLEANING 



289 



out with turpentine to the consist- 
ency of sirup. Apply with a soft 
cloth, and polish with flannel or vel- 
veteen. 

To Bestore the Color of Furniture. 
— Apply raw linseed oil by means of 
a flannel cloth to restore the color, 
and let stand over night. 

Or, for highly polished surfaces, 
as rosewood or mahogany, apply a 
cloth moistened with alcohol. After- 
wards polish with a soft cloth mois- 
tened with turpentine. 

Linseed Oil for Turniture. — Ap- 
ply raw linseed oil as a restorer, with 
or without an equal quantity of tur- 
pentine. 

Care of Piano. — The back of the 
piano should be protected by a dust 
cloth of denim or other suitable ma- 
terial tacked or pasted lightly to the 
frame. In moist climate the wires 
wiU be protected from rust by 
sprinkling them with unslaked lime. 
The keys should be wiped with al- 
cohol once a week on cleaning day 
to prevent them from yellowing, and 
the varnish may be kept in good con- 
dition by wiping once a week with 
a chamois wrung out of cold or warm 
water, or by wiping with a cloth 
moistened with turpentine, kerosene, 
or cold-dravni linseed oil, or a mix- 
ture of these. 

To Clean Pianos. — A careful in- 
quiry by a dealer in pianos from the 
largest factories in the United States 
discloses the fact that there is no 
better means of cleaning a polished 
piano or any other highly polished 
furniture than to simply wash it in 
lukewarm water, drying each part 
perfectly by rubbing briskly as fast 
as it is washed. This method is as 
safe as it is simple. It leaves the 
polish absolutely uninjured. 

To Clean Piano Keys. — Remove 
stains with oxalic acid and keep the 
keys white by rubbing with a soft 
piece of cloth wet with alcohol or 
with cologne water. Expose the keys 
to sunshine on bright, sunny days to 
bleach them. 

Cleaner for Husical Instruments. 
— To clean guitars, violins, etc., mix 



equal quantities of linseed oil, tur- 
pentine, and water. Shake well be- 
fore using to form an emulsion or 
cream. Rub the instrument with a 
cloth dampened in this cream, wipe 
dry, and polish with woolen cloth, 
chamois, or velveteen. 

To Clean Cane Chairs and Wicker, 
Bamboo, and Rattan Furniture. — 
First blow the dust out of the crev- 
ices with a pair of bellows or a good- 
sized bellows or bicycle pump. This 
will greatly assist in cleaning. Make 
a suds by dissolving half a bar of 
white soap in a gallon or more of 
water and add half a cupful of com- 
mon salt. This will prevent the cane 
from turning yellow. Apply the suds 
to the chair with a scrubbing brush, 
first one side and then the other, 
using plenty of water so that the cane 
may be thoroughly soaked. Place it 
out of doors to dry in a shady place. 
This will make the cane firm and 
tight and renew its elasticity. 

To Bleach Willow Furniture. — 
To bleach willow furniture, make a 
suds as above and add 3 ounces of 
bleaching powder. 

To Renovate Cane Chairs. — When 
the cane bottoms of chairs wear out, 
buy new cane and learn to weave 
cane seats. This is a simple art 
which may be easily learned by any- 
one, experimenting with the cane of 
an old chair and by a little practice. 

CLEANIITG PICTURE FRAMES 

To Protect Gilt Picture Frames. — 
Brush gilt frames with water in 
which onions have been boiled — three 
or four to a pint. Also wash the 
glass with it. Onion water will not 
injure the frames, and will prevent 
flies from lighting upon the picture. 

Or, after dusting, go over the 
frames lightly with a soft flannel 
cloth moistened in kerosene. 

Or give them a coat of clear 
parchment size. This will prevent 
the dirt from darkening the gilt. 
The size may be sponged with cold 
water or oil of turpentine, and left 
to dry without wiping. 



290 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



Or give the frames when new a 
coat of white varnish. This may be 
washed with clear cold water. 

Or wash soiled gilt frames with a 
gill of vinegar dissolved in a pint of 
cold water and applied with a soft 
brush. 

Or stir into a quart of water 
enough powdered sulphur to give it 
a slightly yellow tinge, and in this 
water boil four or five sliced onions. 
Strain and apply with a soft brush 
to soiled gUt frames. 

Or to 3 ounces of white of egg add 
1 ounce of chloride of potassium 
or soda and beat up together. Dust 
the frame with a, soft brush, and 
brush over them with the above mix- 
ture. 

Or apply well-beaten white of egg 
with a camel's-hair brush and wipe 
off with a soft flannel cloth. But 
rub with the cloth very little and 
very lightly. 

Or wash with alcohol or spirits of 
turpentine, using a soft sponge, and 
let dry without wiping. 

All picture frames should be 
treated with one of the above prepa- 
rations several times during the 
spring and summer. 

Or cover the frames with oiled 
tarlatan, which may be obtained 
ready oiled for this purpose. 

Or brush boiled linseed oil over 
ordinary tarlatan. This is excel- 
lent for keeping dust from books, 
bric-a-brac, and various other ob- 
jects. 

Apply alcohol to fly spots and 
other stains with a camel's-hair 
brush to soften them, and wipe off 
the frame with a, soft chamois or 
flannel cloth. Do not use linen for 
this purpose, as it deadens the 
brightness of the gilding. 

To Kenovate Gilt Frames. — ^Apply 
gilt paint with a camel's-hair brush 
to spots where the gilding has come 
off 80 as to expose the wood. 

Or if the bit of gilding that has 
come off can be found and is large 
enough, moisten the spot with glue 
and replace it, bringing it up to a, 
level by means of putty if necessary. 



Let dry and go over it with gold 
paint. 

To Clean Gilt Ornaments. — ^Make 
a strong solution of cyanide of po- 
tassium. But remember that this is 
a deadly poison. Apply with a stiff 
brush, or dip the articles in this 
solution. Afterwards rinse with wa- 
ter, using a soft brush, and dry in 
boxwood or other hard-wood shav- 
ings. These may be obtained of any 
jeweler. Store away gilt articles in 
boxwood shavings to keep them from 
tarnishing. 

Or clean them with a lather of 
soft white soap, rinsing with clear 
water. 

To Clean Silver Ornaments. — ^Make 
a suds by dissolving hard white soap 
in boiling water, inmierse the arti- 
cles, and boil for five minutes. Re- 
move and scrub gently with a soft 
brush, rinse in clear boiling water, 
and wipe dry with a soft cloth. Lay 
them near the fire until the moisture 
has perfectly evaporated, or cover 
them -with boxwood sawdust until 
fully dried. 

To Preserve Oil Paintings. — Ap- 
ply two or three coats of pure white- 
lead paint to the back of the can- 
vas. This preserves the canvas from 
damp, mold, and mildew, and makes 
it practically indestructible. Many 
ancient canvases treated in this way 
have been preserved for centuries. 
The same process will strengthen a 
decaying canvas. 

To Clean Oil Paintings. — To clean 
an oU painting, wash the surface 
gently with clear warm water, using 
a soft cloth or fine sponge, let dry, 
and rub gently with a soft flannel 
cloth moistened with pure olive oil. 
The water softens the accumulated 
smoke, dust, and dirt, and the oil 
assists in wiping it away. 

Or wash with mUk diluted with 
warm water, and dry without rins- 
ing. 

Or cut a potato in half and rub 
gently with the fresh surface, slicing 
off the soiled portions, until the 
whole is cleansed. 

The practice of covering the sur- 



HOUSE CLEANING 



291 



race of paintings with soft soap or 
other alkaline lyes is a very mischiev- 
ous one. If the paintings are of any 
value, they should be cleaned only by 
an expert. 

To Clean Prints. — Fasten the print 
to a board by means of thumb' tacks, 
cover with fine common salt, and 
moisten the salt slightly with lemon 
juice. Turn the board at an angle 
and pour boiling water over the sur- 
face until the salt and lemon juice 
are washed off. Dry gradually in 
the shade. 

Or, to remove yellow stains from 
engravings, dissolve hydrochloride of 
soda in water. Moisten a cloth with 
this solution and lay over the stain 
until it is removed. Rinse with clear 
water. 

To Bestore White in Oil Paint- 
ings. — To renovate old oil paintings 
in which the whites have become 
dark by the action of the air on 
paints containing carbonate of lead 
or other lead compounds, apply, by 
means of a soft brush, water charged 
with four or five volumes of oxygen. 
Afterwards let dry and go over the 
painting with copal varnish. 

To Slend Gilt Prames. — To replace 
on gUt frames ornaments that have 
been broken off and lost, melt to- 
gether with gentle heat 1 pound of 
rosin, J pint of linseed oU, and J 
gill of Venetian turpentine. Dissolve 
separately J pound of glue in 3 
quarts of water and mix the two 
solutions. Boil and stir constantly 
until the water is evaporated, leav- 
ing a thick mass, to which add pow- 
dered whiting until the whole is of 
the consistency of putty. Mold to 
the desired shape while warm, and 
when cold it will set and harden. 
Color with gUt paint. 

To Clean Wood Prames. — First 
dust with a, soft brush, and after- 
wards wipe with flannel dipped in 
sweet oil. 

To Kenovate Old Gilt Prames. — 
GUt frames that are past retouching 
with gilt paint may be renovated by 
renioving the gilding with fine sand- 
paper or rubbing down the surface 



with a moistened cloth dipped in 
powdered pumice or rotten stone. 
Paint with black or other color of 
enamel paint or any desired stain, 
and afterwards apply a coat of co- 
pal or any hard white varnish. 

CLEANING BBIC-A-BBAC AND HIS- 
CELLANEOTJS OBJECTS 

To Clean Brass Purniture. — Brass 
bedsteads and brass fittings on fur- 
niture may be cleaned by moistening 
a cloth in sweet oil and dipping it 
in powdered whiting or rotten stone 
pulverized finely and sifted through 
cheese cloth. 

Or mix finely powdered tripoli with 
linseed oil. Apply with a sponge or 
rag, and polish with a piece of felt or 
velveteen. 

Or moisten a cloth in ammonia 
and dip in powdered whiting. 

To Clean Brass Inlaid Work. — 
Mix equal quantities of rotten stone, 
starch, and oxalic acid with water 
to a stiff paste and dilute with sweet 
oU. Apply with a piece of felt or 
velveteen, and polish with a flannel 
rag or moistened chamois. 

To Clean Bric-a-Brac. — Brass or- 
naments on bric-a-brac may be 
cleaned with a piece of stale bread. 
Hold the bread by the crust and rub 
carefully, allowing the crumbs to 
fall with the dirt. Brass candle- 
sticks, lamps, and the like may be 
cleaned with soap and water,, but 
lacquered articles require careful 
treatment without soap. 

To Clean Bronzes. — Genuine 
bronzes may be washed with good 
soapsuds and a sponge or rag, and 
wiped dry with a soft flannel cloth 
or chamois. 

Or dirt and stains may first be 
removed with a flannel cloth mois- 
tened in sweet oil; afterwards pol- 
ish with 'flannel or chamois. 

To Clean Mother-of-Pearl. — Rub 
with a cheese-cloth bag containing 
dry pumice, or apply finely pow- 
dered pimiice moistened with sweet 
oil, and polish with a piece of felt 
or velveteen. 



292 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



To Clean Upholstered Furniture. 
— In cities the pneumatic cleaning 
machine removes all dust and dirt 
from upholstered furniture with lit- 
tle labor, but where this is not avail- 
able take the furniture out of doors 
and freely apply gasoline or naph- 
tha. Pour these on so as to saturate 
the upholstered parts, and rub vigor- 
ously with a soft hair brush, sponge, 
or flannel cloth dipped in warm 
gasoline until all spots and soiled 
places are fully cleaned. Keep the 
furniture out of doors in a draught 
until the cleanser evaporates. This 
process will also destroy moths. 

To Clean Brick or Stone Work. — 
Mop with a solution of caustic potash 
or soda with oxalic acid dissolved in 
water. Or pour the mixture over the 
surfaces and scrub with a scrubbing 
brush, but do not dip the hands in 
this mixture and do not use it too 
strong. 

To Clean Ivory. — For cleaning 
ivory, use prepared chalk, lime, brick 
dust, turpentine, lemon juice, salt and 
vinegar, lime, potash, and alum. 

Ivory ornaments, brooches, card 
cases, bracelets, carvings, piano keys, 
and the like may be cleaned by 
painting them over with spirits of 
turpentine and, when possible, ex- 
posing them for two or three days 
to sunshine. Or articles that can be 
taken out of doors may be bleached 
by simply moistening them with wa- 
ter and exposing th»n to direct sun- 
shine. 

Or dissolve slaked lime in water 
to the consistency of milk. Cover 
the articles with this, or dip them in 
it if convenient, and steep as long 
as may be necessary. Remove them, 
allow the slaked lime to dry on, and 
when dry rub off and polish with a 
dry cloth. 

Or apply salt and lemon juice. 
Polish with whiting. Apply with a 
moist cloth and rub with a chamois. 

If small ivory articles are badly 
stained and discolored, first soak 
them for 24 hours or longer in a 
solution of 1 part of baking soda 
to i parts of water. Rinse, and 



immerse in a solution of 1 part of 
stilphite of soda to 3 parts of wa- 
ter for another day or 2. Finally 
add to the latter solution 1 ounce of 
hydrochloric acid diluted with 6 
ounces of water, and allow the arti- 
cles to stand in this for 2 or 3 
days. Wash in clean water, dry, and 
polish. 

To Glean Bric-a-Brac. — For deep, 
narrow-necked flower vases, rose 
bowls, or carafes, cut some potato 
parings in small squares and pour 
over them water in which baking 
soda has been dissolved. Put them 
into the glasses to be cleaned, let 
stand a few minutes, and shake well. 
Afterwards wash in soapsuds and 
polish. 

Or use 3 tablespoonfuls of vinegar 
to 1 of rice. Shake well. 

To polish, use fuller's earth finely 
powdered or whiting. Never use hot 
water for these articles. Allow the 
water to cool imtil it wiU bear the 
hands comfortably. 

To Clean a Chandelier. — Apply 
pure vinegar with a small sponge; 
afterwards wash in soapsuds and 
polish with flannel or chamois. 

To renovate tarnished metallic 
parts, paint black with the dull-black 
paint used for ebonizing. Or apply 
white, gilt, or any other enamel paint 
desired. 

Glass Stoppers. — The glass stop- 
pers of decanters or carafes and oth- 
er bottles sometimes stick and are 
very difficult to remove. To obviate 
this, use a large glass marble, either 
of clear glass or containing fancy 
figures. This makes a good stopper 
for a decanter or water bottle and is 
easily removed. 

To remove a stopper that sticks, 
first apply a few drops of sweet oil 
or salad oil to the neck of the stop- 
per, and let stand a few minutes to 
soak in between the stopper and the 
neck of the bottle. 

If this does not loosen the stopper, 
apply heat to the neck of the bottle 
on the outside. It is well known that 
heat expands all substances, and, if 
applied to the outside, the neck of 



HOUSE CLEANING 



293 



the bottle will expand before the 
stopper does, and the stopper will 
become loosened. This may be done 
by putting a narrow strip of flannel 
about the neck of the bottle and 
drawing it back and forth rapidly 
to create friction. This will some- 
times cause heat enough in a few 
minutes. 

Or hold the hand about the neck 
of the bottle until the heat of the 
hand causes it to expand. 

Or, if this is not sufBcient, dip a 
rag in water as hot as the hands will 
bear and wrap it about the neck of 
the bottle. This must not be done, 
however, when the bottle is very 
cold, as it may be cracked by ex- 
panding too suddenly. 

Or hold the neck of the bottle 
near a gas jet or an open flame, 
turning it constantly to prevent any 
part from becoming overheated. 

Or wrap a piece of cloth about the 
stopper and with a light piece of 
wood tap it gently, first on one side, 
then on the other. Do not use a 
hammer or other metal tool or uten- 
sil for this purpose. 

To Glean Clocks. — To clean a 
clock, saturate a cloth or pad of 
cotton with kerosene oil and lay it 
inside on a small dish that will pre- 
vent the woodwork from being satu- 
rated. As it evaporates, the fumes 
will loosen any foreign substance on 
the wheels of the clock and cause it 
to drop. Repeat as often as neces- 
sary. The fumes also tend to lubri- 
cate the works. 

Or remove the works of alarm 
clocks and others which are made 
exclusively of metal, and place them 
in an earthenware jar or other clean 
vessel having a tight-fitting cover. 
Pour over them kerosene oU through 
a cloth strainer or filter paper to 
remove all sediment. Let stand un- 
til the grease and dirt have been en- 
tirely cut and removed. The clock 
may be returned to its case without 
waiting for the excess of oil to evap- 
orate. 

To Oil Clocks. — ^To oil a clock, ob- 
tain the purest olive oil and cleanse 



it by adding half a pint of lime wa- 
ter to each quart of oil. Shake well 
and let stand three or four days, 
when the pure oil may be carefully 
poured off the sediment and strained 
through silk or filter paper. 

To Glean Metals. — Variotis acids 
are recommended for cleaning metals, 
as tartaric, oxalic, acetic, muriatic, 
and the like; also alcohol, turpentine, 
and petroleiun products, and such 
materials as whiting, powdered pum- 
ice, rotten stone, bath brick, etc., 
mixed with water or oil. 

Paste for Uetals. — ^Mix 1 ounce of 
oxalic acid with 6 ounces of rotten 
stone, and dilute to a soft paste with 
equal parts of train oil and spirits of 
turpentine. 

Or mix strong potash or soda lye 
with alcohol and apply to metals with 
a brush. Let dry, and polish with a 
soft cloth or moist chamois. This will 
remove verdigris and most other forms 
of rust or tarnish. 

Brass — To Prevent Tarnishing. — 
Moisten powdered sal ammoniac with 
water and apply to the brass by means 
of a brush. Afterwards heat the ar- 
ticle until the sal ammoniac is melt- 
ed. Cool, and polish with dry whiting 
and soft cloth. 

To Glean Brass. — Dissolve J ounce 
of oxalic acid in 1 pint of soft water 
and wash the brass, or moisten a cloth 
in sweet oil dipped in powdered whit- 
ing or rotten stone, and scour. 

Or mix to a soft paste 1 ounce of 
starch, 13 ounces of rotten stone, 2 
ounces of sweet oil, and 3 ounces of 
oxalic acid with water, and apply with 
a cloth or chamois. 

Or, to clean brass inlaid work, mix 
tripoli with linseed oil, and apply by 
means of a piece of folded velveteen 
or other suitable polisher. Or use a 
good furniture paste. But if the wood 
has a very high polish, finish the 
cleaning by rubbing on dry starch 
with the palm of the hand. 

Or mix 2 ounces of sulphuric acid, 
IJ ounces of nitric acid, 1 dram of 
saltpeter, and 3 ounces of rain water, 
and let stand until the solution set- 
tles. Dip the articles in this, or go 



294 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



over them with a soft brush dipped 
in this mixture, rinse immediately with 
soft water, and wipe dry. Or dry 
in sawdust. To prevent future tar- 
nishing, apply a good coat of brass 
lacquer. 

To Clean Bronze. — To clean genu- 
ine bronze, apply hot soapsuds or boil 
the article in suds. Rinse and wipe 
dry with a soft cloth or chamois 
skin. 

Or, for small articles, apply sweet 
oil with a brush and rub off with a 
flannel cloth. 

Polish with dry whiting and cham- 
ois skin. 

To Clean Nickel. — Mix equal quan- 
tities of alcohol and aqua ammonia 
and stir in whiting to the consistency 
of thin cream. Apply with a brush 
and soft cloth, let dry, and polish with 
a clean, dry cloth or chamois skin. 

Or, to remove stains from nickel, 
dilute 1 part of sulphuric acid in SO 
parts of alcohol, and dip the articles 
in the solution until the stains are re- 
moved, which should take not more 
than 5 or 10 seconds. Rinse in al- 
cohol and afterwards in clear water, 
and polish with dry whiting and cham- 
ois. Repeat if necessary. 

To Clean Gilt Metals. — ^Metals fin- 
ished in gUt or lacquer should not be 
washed with strong soaps containing 
free alkali, but preferably with clear, 
soft warm water and a fine sponge. 

Or a little castile soap or other fine 
white soap may be used if necessary. 

Clean out the crevices in the orna- 
mental parts with a soft brush, as an 
old toothbrush, but use no more force 
than is necessary to avoid injuring 
the gilding. Wipe dry with chamois 
or a piece of soft woolen cloth or 
silk. 

Bronzed articles, not genuine bronze, 
require only dusting or wiping with 
a soft cloth. Washing will injure the 
bronzing. 

Burnishing Powder. — To make a 
high polish for metals, mix 4 ounces 
of prepared chalk, IJ ounces of pipe 
clay, 1 ounce of white lead, J ounce of 
carbonate of magnesia, and J ounce of 
jeweler's rouge. 



TO CLEAir UABBLE, BBICE. AND 
STOITE 

To Clean Uarble. — To clean marble 
mantels, table tops, tops of bureaus, 
washstands, and other polished marble 
surfaces, wipe them with a cloth mois- 
tened in kerosene. 

Or mix 3 ounces of common soda, 1 
ounce of pumice stone, and 1 ounce of 
fine common salt, and dilute with 
water to the consistency of cream. 
Pour this mixture over the marble and 
let stand until all stains are removed. 
Afterwards wash the marble with salt 
and water, rinse, and wipe dry. 

Or mix soft soap and whiting to a 
thin paste, and apply to the marble 
by means of a soft brush. Let stand 
until fully dry, and wash off with 
lukewarm suds made of hard white 
or yellow soap. 

Or give the marble a coating of mu- 
cilage made by boiling to the con- 
sistency of thick cream 4 ounces of gum 
arable in 1 quart of water. Dilute 
with hot water if necessary. Apply 
with a brush and expose the article 
to the sun and air until the mucilage 
cracks and can be readily rubbed off, 
then wash with clear water and a soft 
cloth. Repeat if necessary. 

Or stir into 1 pint of soft soap 1 
teaspoonful of bluing and 2 teaspoon- 
fuls of whiting, and bring to a boil. 
Apply hot, let dry, and rinse off the 
clear water. 

Or make a paste of equal parts of 
whiting, soap, and sal soda with a 
small amount of bluing; apply with 
a piece of felt or velveteen and rinse 
with clear water. Wipe dry, and pol- 
ish with a flannel cloth or chamois. 

Or dissolve 1 pound of pipe clay in 
1 quart of boiling water. Add 1 quart 
of beer and a few drops of bluing. 
Bring to a boil and stir. Apply this 
freely with a cloth, wipe dry, and pol- 
ish. 

To Remove Iron Rust from Marble. 
— To remove iron stains from marble, 
dilute 1 part of oxalic acid with 10 
parts of alcohol, or 1 part of sul- 
phuric acid with 25 to SO parts of al- 
cohol; cover the spot and let stand 



HOUSE CLEANING 



295 



IS minutes to a half hour. Wash off 
with water containing aqua ammonia 
to stop the action of the acid. Re- 
peat if necessary. 

Or cover the spot thickly with salt 
and moisten with lemon juice. 

Or apply 1 part of nitric acid dilut- 
ed with 25 parts of water, and rinse 
with aqua ammonia. 

Or apply strong nitric acid direct 
to the stain by means of a small swab 
or cloth, or cotton on the end of a 
stick, and at once rinse off with aqua 
ammonia and water. Remember that 
the acid tends to eat and injure the 
marble if it is not immediately rinsed 
off; hence rinse well. If the surface 
of the marble is roughened by the 
acid, scour with a moist cloth dipped 
in rotten stone or powdered pumice. 

Or cover the spot with salts of lem- 
on, and add just enough water to dis- 
solve the crystals. 

Or mix equal quantities of salts of 
lemon and piunice stone, and rub the 
spot with a cloth dipped in this mix- 
ture. Continue until removed. 

To Clean Marble Steps. — To clean 
coarse marbles, as doorsteps, monu- 
ments, and the like, mix equal quan- 
tities of qtiicklime and potash lye and 
dilute with water to a thin cream. 
Apply with a brush, let stand twen- 
ty-four hours or more, and wash off 
with hot soapsuds. 

To Remove Stains from Harble. — 
Cut a lemon in half and rub with it, 
or apply a saturated solution of oxalic 
acid. 

Or make a paste of equal parts of 
whiting and sal soda dissolved in 
water. Cover the stains, and let stand 
for several hours. Afterwards wash 
off with soapsuds. 

To Kemove Oil Stains from Marble. 
— Apply common clay, starch, whit- 
ing, or prepared chalk, and saturate 
with gasoline or other petroleum 
product. Should these injure the pol- 
ish, scour with a moistened cloth 
dipped in pumice stone, and polish 
with whiting. 

Or mix with boiling water 2 ounces 
of soft soap, 3 ounces of caustic pot- 
ash, and 4 ounces of fuller's earth. 



Cover the spots thickly, and let stand 
for several hours. Rinse with clear 
water. 

To Polish Marble. — For poUshing 
marble, sandstone, sand and water, 
emery powder, putty powder, tripoli, 
and whiting are all recommended. 
But the coarser materials, such as 
sandstone and fine sand, should only 
be used on rough marble which has 
never been previously polished. Select 
material suitable to the condition of 
the marble, and follow with a finer 
one until the desired polish is ob- 
tained. 

To polish a rough marble slab, use 
first a level block of fine sandstone 
for working down. Cover the surface 
with water and rub with the sandstone 
in a circular motion, working outward 
from the center until the whole sur- 
face shows a uniform texture. Next 
tack a piece of felt to a smooth block 
of wood and use a finer quality of 
sand or glass powder with water. 
Follow this with a fresh piece of felt 
mounted on a level block of wood, 
using fine emery powder with water, 
and lastly use putty powder or tripoli 
with water and a chamois skin mount- 
ed on a block of wood. 

To Clean Brick and Stone Walks. 
— To remove the green fungous growth 
on brick or stone walks and walls ex- 
posed to moisture, pour over them 
boiling water in which potatoes or 
other vegetables have been cooked, pro- 
vided that it does not contain grease 
of any kind. Repeat if necessary. 

Or pour strong brine over the brick 
or stone, or scatter dry salt over it 
just before or after a rain. This will 
also kill any tufts of grass and weeds 
that come up between the bricks and 
stones, but care must be taken that it 
is not used in quantities sufficient to 
leach off into the soil and kill the ad- 
jacent grass of the lawn or the plants 
in flower beds. Hence use a small 
quantity of salt, and repeat if neces- 
sary. 

To Polish Stucco Work. — Let the 
stucco dry, then rub it down with a 
flat block of pumice stone. Follow 
with whiting and polish with tripoli, 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



using a piece of felt mounted on a 
block of wood. Wash down with 
soapsuds. 

To Polish Mother-of-Pearl. — Polish 
with finely sifted pumice stone, fol- 
lowed by putty powder or tripoli 
mixed with water and applied with a 
piece of felt. 

To Clean Alaliaster. — Remove stains 
from alabaster by covering the spot 
with whiting and water, or with white- 
wash, or with salt and lemon juice. 
Or apply equal quantities of quick- 
lime and soda made into a thin paste 
with water. Let stand until dry, then 
wipe off with a sponge or soft cloth 
and clear water. Repeat if necessary. 

Or, to remove obstinate stains, ap- 
ply a dilute solution of oxalic acid or 
spirits of salts, and rinse with aqua 
ammonia. 

Or wash with castUe soap and water. 
Cover with a coating of whiting mixed 
with water, let stand until dry, rinse 
with clear water, and polish. 

To Polish Alabaster. — To polish 
alabaster, marble, or any similar min- 
eral, first clean the articles, then take 
out scratches or other rough spots 
with finely powdered pumice stone or 
emery and water. Polish with putty 
po\vder and water by means of a piece 
of felt mounted on a block. 

To Polish Glass. — A scratched win- 
dow pane or a show-case top which 
has been roughened by use and par- 
tially lost its transparency may be 
polished by covering with a strong 
solution of potash lye applied by 
means of a brush. Let it dry, and 
polish with a moist cloth. Repeat if 
necessary. 

Or, if this is not effectual, polish 
with putty powder and water by means 
of a piece of felt. 

To Clean Papier-mache'. — Wash with 
clean cold water, using a sponge or 
soft cloth. WhUe still damp, cover 
it with dry flour and rub dry with a 
piece of woolen cloth or chamois. 

To Clean Gutta Percha. — Dissolve 
with gentle heat a little hard white 
soap in an equal bulk of water, and 
stir into the soap jelly thus made 
an equal bulk of powdered charcoal. 



Scour the article with this, and polish 
with a dry cloth and finely powdered 
charcoal. 

CLEANIITG KITCHEN STOVES AND 
OTHEB HETALS 

To Clean Stoves. — First examine the 
stove or range to see if any parts need 
replacing. Make a note of these, and 
obtain new ones from the manufactur- 
ers or some local merchant. Remove 




"See if Any Parts Are Needed." 

clinkers, clean the grate, fireplace, 
spaces under and over the oven, flues, 
etc. Dust off the top of the stove, 
and wash the outside with very hot 
water and soda applied with a stiff 
brush or a coarse cloth, or both. 

Suggestion's for removing rust and 
polishing nickel and other ornaments, 
and for blacking and polishing the 
stove and preventing rust when not in 
use, will be found elsewhere. 

To Hake a Hearth. — Prepare mor- 
tar by mixing sifted wood ashes vrith 
salt and water in the proportion of 
1 tablespoonful of salt to 1 gallon of 
ashes. Spread this over the hearth 
with a trowel, and tamp it down as 
hard as possible with the end of a log 
of wood, or otherwise. Level smooth- 
ly with the trowel. 

Make a hot fire in the fireplace or 



HOUSE CLEANING 



297 



grate. If the mortar cracks, add* 
more, tamping it into the cracks. This 
makes a hard, smooth white surface. 

Or mix 3 parts of unslaked lime 
and 1 part of smith's black dust with 
water, and treat as above. 

To Clean Grates. — Brush the dust 
^ from the grate with a stiff brush. 
Then mix 4 ounces of pure black lead 
with 1 pint of beer, add 2 ounces of 
hard white or yellow soap, bring all 
to a boil, and while hot apply this 
mixture with a paint brush. Allow it 
to cool, then polish with a hard brush 
or polishing mitten. 

Or, if the grate is much rusted, al- 
low the black lead to remain for a 
day or two. It wiU loosen the rust so 
that it can be scraped off. The grate 
may then be blacked and polished. 

Or first scrub the grate with soap 
and water and apply rotten stone 
moistened with sweet oil. Black and 
polish. 

To Black Grates. — Melt 2J pounds 
of asphaltum and add 1 pound of 
boiled oil. Remove from the fire, and 
when cool add 2 quarts of spirits of 
turpentine, stirring vigorously. Ap- 
ply with a brush. 

Or melt 6 J pounds of asphaltum; 
add 1 pound of litharge and 1 gallon 
of boiled oil. Boil untU the mixture 
falls in strings from the stirrer. To 
test, put a little on a glass plate. If 
on cooling it becomes quite hard, re- 
move the mixture from the fire, and 
when cold, thin to any desired con- 
sistency by adding 3 or more gallons 
of spirits of turpentine. 

To Prevent Bust. — Substances rec- 
ommended for preventing rust are 
various animal fats, as lard, suet, and 
tallow, and oils, as linseed oil, olive 
oil, vaseline, etc.; also black lead, 
paraffin, collodion, quicklime, gutta 
percha, varnish, pitch-tar paint, and 
• various mixtures of these. The ob- 
ject in all cases is to prevent contact 
of the metal with the oxygen of the 
air, especially where there is mois- 
ture. 

The formation of rust is a process 
of combustion similar to that which 
takes place in breathing and in the 



burning of fuel and other combusti- 
bles. The oxygen of the air uniting 
with iron forms a compoimd called 
ferrous oxide, which is iron rust. This 
action is very much hastened by mois- 
ture. Hence a coating of any oily, 
greasy, or sticky substance which will 
adhere to the metal without injuring 
it will prevent rust. Which of the 
following recipes is best will depend 
upon the article to be protected, and 
whether or not it is to be used or 
stored away. Such substances as col- 
lodion, paraffin, and black lead mixed 
with lard or other animal fat, boiled 
linseed oU, etc., can be used on small 
polished articles, as steel tools, skates, 
and the like. They can be readily re- 
moved, when necessary, by washing. 

Paraffin, collodion, boiled linseed oU, 
and copal varnish may be applied to 
tools and other articles which are in 
process of use, the excess being wiped 
off with a dry cloth. Pitch tar and 
paint can, of course, only be applied 
to coarser articles according to their 
several characters. 

Stoves — To Prevent Bust. — To pro- 
tect from rust stoves and stovepipes 
that are taken down in the spring and 
stored during the summer, apply kero- 
sene with a brush or cloth. The crude 
oil is better for this purpose than the 
refined. It costs less and does not 
evaporate so quickly. 

Or melt 3 parts of lard with 1 part 
of rosin, and apply with a brush while 
warm. 

Or apply linseed oil, or a mixture 
of equal parts of linseed oil and kero- 
sene. 

Or a mixture of 4 parts of linseed 
oil, 4 parts of kerosene, and 1 part of 
turpentine. 

Apply the above mixtures in a thin 
coat while slightly warm. 

To Protect Stovepipes from Bust. 
— Shake the dirt and soot out of the 
inside of the stovepipe, then insert an 
old broom and brush out as clean as 
possible. Paint the outside of the 
stovepipe with a coat of black paint, 
or apply any of the above rust-proof 
mixtures. 

Stovepipes rust on the inside as 



298 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



\ 



well as on the outside. Hold the pipe 
with an open end toward a good light, 
or reflect a light inside by means of a 
mirror. Affix a brush to a long han- 
dle and cover the inside of the pipe 




Reflect a Light Inside." 



as well as the outside with oil or other 
rust preventives. 

To Keep Nickel Pittings from Rust- 
ing. — Remove the nickel fittings from 
the stove, cover them with any of the 
above preventives, wrap them in thin 
cloths, and lay them away until 
wanted. 

Or cover them with unslaked lime. 

Or, if badly rusted, go over the 
nickel fittings with aluminum paint. 

To Prevent Rust. — To prevent rust 
on tin roofs and other exposed metal 
surfaces, bring to a boil 2 pounds of 
linseed-oil varnish. Stir into this a 
mixture of 3 ounces of black lead, 8 
ounces of sulphide of lead, and 2 
ounces of sulphide of zinc. Apply 
with a brush. 

Or paint exposed metal surfaces 
with a paint consisting of 30 parts of 
pure white lead, 8 parts of crude 
linseed oil, 3 parts of boiled linseed 
oil, and 1 part of spirits of turpen- 
tine. Apply two or more coats as 
needed. 

To Preserve Metals from Bust. — To 
preserve stoves, skates, sleigh runners, 
and other steel articles which are 
stored for a portion of the year, smear 
them with vaseline. 

Or paint them with lampblack mixed 



with equal quantities of boiled lin- 
seed oil and copal varnish. 

Or use powdered black lead and 
lard, melting the lard and. stirring in 
the lead, and add a small piece of 
gum camphor. Apply while warm 
with a brush. 

Or melt paraffin, and apply while 
warm with a brush, sponge, or cloth. 

Or clean thoroughly and dust over 
with unslaked lime. 

Or plunge small articles into un- 
slaked lime. 

Or dip the articles in boiled linseed 
oil and allow it to dry on them. 

Or apply a coat of copal varnish. 

Or melt S pounds of beef or mut- 
ton suet, 1 pound of gutta percha, and 
1 gallon of neat's-foot oil or rape oil 
until dissolved. Mix thoroughly and 
apply when cold. 

Or coat with collodion dissolved in 
alcohol. 

Or wrap in zinc foil or store in zinc- 
lined boxes. 

Or mix 1 ounce of oil varnish with 
4 ounces of rectified spirits of turpen- 
tine and apply with a sponge. 

Or heat the articles and dip them 
in train oil. 

To Prevent Bust on Tinware. — Rub 
new tinware with fresh lard, and heat 
in the oven before using. This tends 
to make it rust proof. 

To Preserve Nails, etc., from Bust. 
— ^To preserve from rust nails, screws, 
hinges, and other hardware that will 
be exposed to water, heat them (but 
not enough to injure the temper) in 
an iron skiUet over a fire and drop 
them into train oil. This will pre- 
serve them for many years. 

Or mix i pound of quicklime in 1 
quart of water and allow it to settle. 
Pour off the clear liquid and add to 
the lime sufficient olive oil to form a 
stiff paste. Apply with a brush to 
iron or steel articles to be stored. 

Or, for rough castings and fence 
wire, mix mineral pitch, coal tar, and 
sand in the proportion of 1 pound 
each of coal tar and sand to 20 pounds 
of mineral pitch. Immerse the articles 
in tjie mixture, remove them, and let 
them stand a day or more to harden. 



HOUSE CLEANING 



To Prevent Rust on Piano Wires.' 
— Sprinkle piano wires with unslaked 
lime. 

Steel Table Knives. — Fill a flower 
pot or other deep receptacle with 
quicklime and into it plunge the blades 
of the knives. Do not allow the lime 
to touch the handles. 

To Bemove Rust from Small Arti- 
cles. — Substances recommended for 
removing rust are muriatic acid, kero- 
sene, chloride of tin, and unslaked 
lime used with or without various 
abrasives, as sandpaper, emery paper, 
pxunice stone, powdered brick, and the 
like. 

First immerse the articles in a hot 
solution of sal soda or soapsuds to 
free them from oil or grease. 

Or dilute muriatic acid with twice 
its own bulk of water and immerse 
the articles from a few minutes to 
several hours, according to the amoimt 
of rust. Remove and apply soap and 
water with a scrubbing brush. Re- 
peat if necessary. Rinse, dry, and 
polish with oil and emery paper or 
other good abrasive. 

Or immerse the articles in kerosene 
oil for several hours, or as long as 
may be necessary. This loosens the 
rust so that it may be rubbed off with 
sandpaper or emery paper. 

But if the rust has etched deeply 
into the articles, they may have to be 
refinished. 

Or soften rust with sweet oil and 
rub with sandpaper. 

Or mix 3 parts of pumice stone with 
1 part of sulphur. Moisten with sweet 
oil and apply with chamois. 

Or use emery and oil. 

Or immerse the articles in a saturat- 
ed solution of chloride of tin over 
night, or as long as necessary. Rinse 
in clear water and polish with cham- 
ois. 

Or immerse tham in olive oil, and 
polish with whiting or slaked lime by 
moistening a cloth or chamois and 
dipping it into the dry powder. 

To Glean Zinc. — Substances recom- 
mended for ' cleaning zinc are kero- 
sene, soft soap, salt and vinegar, vine- 
gar and aliun, paraffin, coal ashes, 



sulphuric acid, turpentine, and vari- 
ous compounds of these. As zinc is 
not easily injured, these may all be 
used freely. Rub with a coarse cloth 
saturated with kerosene oil. 

Or heat 2 ounces of salt or 2 ounces 
of alum in 1 quart of vinegar and ap- 
ply hot. Wipe with a dry rag. 

Or dip a cotton cloth in melted 
paraffin and rub until the dirt is re- 
moved. Rinse with clean water and 
wipe dry. 

Or wet with cold vinegar, let stand 
for a few minutes, rinse, and wash. 

Or make a soap jelly by dissolving 
hard soap with twice its own bulk in 
water. Mix with sifted coal ashes to 
a stiff paste. Apply with a moist 
cloth. 

Or mix dilute sulphuric acid (1 part 
of acid to 10 parts of water) with 
glycerin. 

Or mix 1 pint of linseed oil with 
4 ounces of turpentine. 
Or polish with bath brick. 
To Glean Nickel. — Substances rec- 
ommended for cleaning nickel are 
kerosene, jeweler's rouge, whiting, 
powdered borax, and alum. When 
not much soiled, use jeweler's rouge 
and vaseline mixed to a thin paste. 
Apply with flannel and polish with 
chamois. 

Or dampen a rag and dip in pow- 
dered borax. Or, if the articles are 
small and movable, boU in alum and 
water. 

Or rub with a cloth dipped in kero- 
sene. 

To Clean Brass. — Substances recom- 
mended for cleaning brass are vine- 
gar and salt, lemon juice, citric acid, 
oxalic acid, rotten stone, turpentine, 
alum, ammonia, sulphuric, nitric, or 
muriatic acid, and various compounds 
of these. 

To clean brass kettles and other 
utensils, dissolve a tablespoonful of 
salt in a teacupful of vinegar and 
bring to a boil. Apply as hot as pos- 
sible to the brass with a scrubbing 
brush. 

Or apply a solution of oxalic acid 
with a scrubbing brush or cloth, using 
equal parts of oxalic acid and water. 



300 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



Or apply strong aqua ammonia with 
a scrubbing brush. 

Or dissolve 1 ounce of alum in 1 
pint of strong lye and apply with a 
scrubbing brush. 

Or mix 6 ounces of rotten stone, 1 
ounce of oxalic acid, 1 ounce of sweet 
oil, and J ounce of gum arable, and 
dissolve to a thin paste with water. 
Apply with a cloth. 

Or use rotten stone moistened with 
sweet oil. Apply with a cloth mois- 
tened in turpentine. 

Or mix 1 ounce of bichromate of 
potash, 2 ounces of sulphuric acid, and 
3 ounces of pure water. Do not touch 
this with the hands, but apply with 
a mop. 

Or wet a cloth in water, dip in pow- 
dered sal anunoniac, and apply. 

Or mix 4 ounces of rotten stone, 1 
ounce of oxalic acid, and 1 ounce of 
sweet oil with turpentine to form a 
paste, and apply with a. brush mois- 
tened in water. 

Or dissolve 1 ounce of alum in 1 
pint of strong potash or soda lye. 
Immerse the articles in this solution 
or apply hot with a scrubbing brush. 

Or dissolve 1 ounce of alum in 8 
ounces of water and apply hot with a 
scrubbing brush. 

To Polish Brass. — After removing 
tarnish with any of the above cleans- 
ers, wash the article with warm soap- 
suds made of any good, hard white 
soap, dry with a cloth, and polish 
with dry chamois or any good silver 
polish, as whiting, or the like. Fin- 
ish by rubbing the articles with a cloth 
slightly moistened with vaseline. This 
will prevent tarnishing. 

Or coat with collodion dissolved in 
alcohol, or thin shellac applied by 
means of a camel's-hair brush, 

PACKING 

Packing — To Move. — Obtain 
plenty of barrels, and a relatively 
large number of small packing cases 
rather than a few large ones, a quan- 
tity of excelsior, burlap, and strong 
manila cord. Also a number of 
strong manila tags on which write, 



stamp, or print your name and the 
address to which the goods are to 
be shipped. Number these tags from 
1 upward. Pack, as far as possible, 
by themselves articles from each sep- 
arate room or part of the house, and 
note in a blank book the contents of 
each barrel, case, or package. For 
example, if numbers 1 to 5 are china, 
and numbers 5 to 10 are kitchen 
hardware, the packages can be de- 
livered to the appropriate part of 
the house and unpacked as required 
without confusion. 

To Pack China. — Pack china and 
other fragile articles, also small me- 
tallic objects, as lamps, kitchenware, 
bric-a-brac, etc., in barrels rather 
than packing cases. To pack such 
articles, first cover the bottom of 
the barrel with a layer 3 or 4 inches 




" Nest Dishes Together and Pack on Edge." 

deep of excelsior or fine hay slightly 
moistened. Wrap each article sepa- 
rately in newspaper or tissue paper. 
Select the larger and heavier pieces 
and lay a niraiber of them side by side 
2 or 3 inches apart. Stack plates and 
platters together, with just enough 
packing material between them to sep- 
arate them i of an inch or so, and 
stand them on edge. Nest together 
in the same way cups and saucers, 



HOUSE CLEANING 



301 



sauce dishies, and other articles of 
similar shape and size, putting a lit- 
tle packing between, but handling the 
entire nest in packing as one solid 
article. Take special care to protect 
handles and other protuberances so 
that no strain will be likely to come 
upon them. 

Surround these dishes with a layer 
of excelsior or hay 3 or 3 inches in 
thickness, crowding the packing ma- 
terial also between them, and finally 
cover them with a layer of equal 
thickness. On this lay a number of 
other articles of somewhat smaller 
size and less weight, surrounding, 
separating, and covering them with 
several inches of packing material, 
and pressing all so firmly together 
that they cannot be shaken out of 
place. Shake the barrel occasionally, 
and if any two pieces are not prop- 
erly separated by the packing mate- 
rial, the fact can be detected by the 
sound of their contact. 

Continue to add successive layers 
until the barrel is filled within 4 or 
S inches of the top. Fill in this 
space with packing material, heap it 
up, take off the top hoop, throw over 
the top a piece of burlap, replace 
the hoop, and tack It securely so as 
to hold the burlap in position. Fas- 
ten on the burlap near the top a tag 
containing your address on one side 
and on the other the words, " Fragile 
—This Side Up With Care." 

To Pack Cut Glass. — Cut glass and 
delicate bric-a-brac, lamp shades, 
and the like may be packed in the 
same manner as china, or carefully 
wrapped in cloth and packed in bar- 
rels surrounded with pillows, or 
placed in trunks containing clothing, 
or in clothes baskets surrounded by 
pillows and covered with burlap. 
Barrels and baskets crated and 
marked "Fragile" will be handled 
with much more care than wooden 
cases, the lids of which are nailed or 
screwed on. 

To Pack Pictures. — Pack small 
pictures face to face, with blankets 
or quilts or other folds of heavy 
cloth between, and lay them in bu- 



reau drawers, with thick layers of 
clothing above and below them. 

Or place two large pictures face 
to face separated by a quilt, tie 
them with strong cord, and surround 
the whole with a crate of rough 
boards. 

To Pack Ulrrors. — Place two mir- 
rors face to face, with several thick- 
nesses of cloth between, and crate 
them. 

To Pack Purniture. — Remove all 
movable parts from furniture, as the 
splasher racks from washstands, mir- 
rors from bureaus, and the like. Re- 
move the casters, tie together with 
stout cord those belonging to each 
article of furniture and attach them 
to some part of the article or drop 
them into a bureau drawer. Thus 
they can be found when wanted. 

Pack the drawers with clothing 
and put small pictures, platters, and 
similar breakable articles between. 
Surround the whole with burlap 
sewed together at the corners, and 
crate with rough boards. Wrap the 
legs of chairs, serving tables, etc., 
with manUa paper, newspapers, or 
cloth, and wind them with a stout 
cord secured so that it wUl not 
slip. 

To Pack Books. — To pack a large 
quantity of books, use either a suita- 
ble number of small packing cases 
or barrels rather than a few large 
packing cases. Books are very heavy, 
and large packing cases are liable 
to burst open by their weight. Bar- 
rels are stronger, and if properly 
packed perhaps better than packing 
cases. To prepare books for pack- 
ing, wrap up together, in packages 
of six or eight or more, those books 
that are most nearly of the same 
size. Have at least one thickness of 
paper between each binding and 
around the entire package. Tie the 
package together with a soft cord so 
that the books cannot rub against 
each other. To pack books in bar- 
rels, handle these packages the same 
as articles of china or bric-a-brac, 
surrounding them with excelsior, hay, 
straw, or other similar material, or 



302 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



with crumpled newspaper; except 
that not so much of the packing ma- 
terial need be used. The barrel may 
be headed up instead of covered 
with burlap, but care must be taken 
not to leave an inch of vacant space. 
Mark it " Books — Keep Dry." 

To pack books in small packing 
cases, stand the parcels on end, with 
the edges next to the sides of the 
cases and the back of the bindings 
pointed inward, and pack between 
crumpled newspapers to ease the 
pressure on the round part of the 
books, which may otherwise be pressed 
flat. Line the case with wrapping 
paper. Lay a thickness of wrapping 
paper over the top, and fasten on the 
cover with screws in preference to 
nails. Or, if nails are used, take 
care to see that they do not slip and 
injure the contents. 

Tools. — Pack in a hand satchel 
hammer, screw-driver, box opener, 
nails, tacks, and other necessary im- 
plements for unpacking and settling 
your goods, together with the book 
containing your inventory and list 
of packages. Then when the goods 
are unpacked, the movers can be di- 
rected to take each package to the 
proper room, and when any particu- 
lar article is needed it can be readily 
located and unpacked as required. 
Also, if any case is missing or in- 
jured, the exact contents will be 
known, and a sworn statement can 
be made out as the basis of a claim 
for damages. 

To Pack for Traveling. — To pack 
a trunk or satchel, first decide what 
to take with you. An old traveler 
describes his method of packing at 
short notice, without forgetting any 
necessary article, by saying that Ms 
method is " to commence with his 
feet and work up." The idea is to 
run over in mind the various articles 
of wearing apparel in that order. 
Thus, enumerate shoes, stockings, 
underwear, outer garments, linen, 
neckwear, etc. Determine what par- 
ticular articles and how many of 
each to select. Get these all together 
and check them up to see that 



nothing has been omitted. Add, of 
course, toilet articles, night gear, 
medicines, etc. Pack first the heavy 
things or those the last to be needed. 
Fold each garment and lay it 
smoothly in the trunk. Do not at- 
tempt to roll garments into tight 
bundles in order to economize space. 
Folded articles laid flat will pack 
more tightly. 

While packing, press down the con-^ 
tents occasionally to see that there 
are no lumps or other inequalities. 

To Pack Men's Coats. — Spread out 
the coat on a flat surface with the 
outside up. Fold the sleeves back at 
the elbows and draw them straight 
down at the sides. Turn back the 
front laps of the coat over the 
sleeves, pull the collar out straight, 
take up the coat at the sleeve holes, 
and fold it wrong side out length- 
wise. Thus the front flaps will be 
folded twice in. 

To Pack a Plaited Skirt. — Pin 
each plait in its place at the bottom 
of the skirt. Lay the skirt on a flat 
surface and fold to just fit the lar- 
gest part of the trunk or suit case. 
In other words, fold as little as pos- 
sible. 

To Pack Summer Gowns. — Remove 
the arm shields and fold the skirt in 
as few folds as possible. Fold the 
waist in the same fashion as a man's 
coat, stuff the sleeves and bust with 
tissue paper, put paper under ruffles, 
and surround the whole with tissue 
paper. But do not use white tissue 
for this purpose, as it is bleached 
with chloride of lime, which tends to 
turn white goods yellow. The blue 
tissue is therefore to be preferred. 

Or put waists on coat hangers and 
stuff the sleeves and bust with tis- 
sue, or lay them flat in the tray 
or top of the trunk. When thus 
packed, they will neither lose shape 
nor wrinkle. 

To Pack Hats. — Pin hats to the 
lids of hat boxes to prevent their 
moving around. Or improvise a hat 
box by laying the hat on the bottom 
of the trunk or tray, and cutting a 
strip of cardboard as high as the 



HOUSE CLEANING 



303 



highest point of the trimming. Pin 
this together at the ends, thus in- 
closing the hat, and lay a piece of 
cardboard across the top. Surround 
this with other articles packed firmly 
to keep them from shifting, and the 
hat will receive no harm. 

Uiscellaneous Objects. — Pack bot- 
tles inside of shoes. Pack a chafing 
dish in the middle of the trunk and 
fill up with small articles. Lay pic- 



tures in the middle tray between 
folded garments and fill the tray 
with clean starched clothes. Put 
summer gowns or evening gowns at 
the top of the tray, which should not 
be packed quite full. Pack in the 
bottom of the trunk a child's toy 
washboard. You can then do up 
for yourself small pieces at hotels 
and summer resorts where laimdry 
charges are high. 



CHAPTER XI 

HOUSEHOLD AND GARDEN ^PESTS 

THE CLOTHES MOTH— CARPET BEETLE OR "BUFFALO MOTH"— 
THE HOUSE CENTIPEDE— THE COMMON COCKROACH OR CRO- 
TON BUG— THE BEDBUG— THE HOUSE FLEA— RATS AND MICE- 
BLACK AND RED ANTS— THE WHITE ANT— THE COMMON HOUSE 
FLY— THE MOSQUITO— ORCHARD, FARM, AND GARDEN PESTS 



THE CLOTHES MOTH 

History of Clothes Moths. — The 
life history of the clothes moth must 
be understood in order to fight in- 
telligently against it and prevent its 
ravages. It is well worth while to 
give the necessary attention to this 
subject, since of all household pests 
the clothes moth stands in the most 
direct and obvious relation to the 
family pocketbook. 

" A garment that is moth-eaten " 
has been mentioned in the Book of 



as these are among the most expen- 
sive materials used as garments, floor 
coverings, draperies, and otherwise, 
the destruction of such articles in a 
single season by moths may and 
often does amount to many dollars. 
The three species of moths common- 
ly found in the United States are 
the case-making species, universally 
distributed in the Northern States; 
the webbing species or Southern 
clothes moth, distributed through the 
Southern States as far north as or 
farther than the latitude of Wash- 




FiG. 1. — CoM-makirw Moth: Above, Fio. 2. — Southern Clothes Moth: Fig. 3. — Tapestry Moth- 
Adult: at Bight, Larva; at Left, Moth, Larva, Cocoon, and Adult Moth. En- 
Larva in Case. Enlarged (.from Empty Pupa Skin. Enlarged larged (from Bileu) 
Rileu). (.from Riley). 



Job, hence the moth is known to be 
very ancient and it is distributed in 
all parts of the world. The destruc- 
tive feeding habits of the larvae have 
caused them to be very carefully ob- 
served and studied, and there is 
abundant information as to preven- 
tives and remedial measures against 
them. 

Moths, as is well known, feed ex- 
clusively on animal substances, as 
woolens, silk, fur, and feathers, and 



ington, and the gallery species or 
tapestry moth, which is rare in the 
United States, and is found princi- 
pally in barns and carriage houses, 
infesting horse blankets and the up- 
holstery of carriages. 

The eggs of the case-making spe- 
cies, which may be called the North- 
ern moth, are laid but once a year, 
in the spring, the moths appearing 
from June to August. Professor 
Fernald states that the eggs are 



304 



HOUSEHOLD AND GARDEN PESTS 



305 



never hatched in winter in the 
North, even in rooms that are heated 
night and day; but in the South this 
species appears from January to Oc- 
tober, and breeds two or more times 
a, year. 

The webbing species or Southern 
clothes moth breeds twice a year, the 
first eggs being laid in May, and the 
second in August or September; 
hence in the North the moth is a 
summer problem, but in the South it 
must be fought the year round. 

The adult moths do no damage 
except to deposit the eggs from 
which the injurious maggots or larvae 
are hatched. Moths choose darkness 
rather than light, and select a quiet 
and secluded spot where they are 
not likely to be disturbed in which 
to deposit their eggs. They also ap- 
pear to prefer garments or other ar- 
ticles which are soiled with spots of 
grease or other organic matter, and 
the larvae appear to choose soiled 
spots or articles in preference to oth- 
ers. The eggs are very minute, and 
are usually deposited on woolens, 
feathers, furs, or other articles which 
are suitable food for the larvae; but 
the latter have the ability to crawl 
from place to place, if necessary, to 
seek proper food. Hence they may 
be deposited in crevices of closets, 
trunks, etc., through which the larvae 
may subsequently enter. 

The larva of the moth is a dull 
white caterpillar. The larva of the 
case-making or Northern moth sur- 
rounds itself with a movable case or 
jacket, but that of the webbing or 
Southern moth merely spins a cob- 
webby path wherever it goes. When 
the larva of the case-making moth is 
mature it becomes quiescent and un- 
dergoes a transformation in its case. 
After about three weeks the moth 
appears. The larva of the Southern 
moth when mature weaves itself a 
cocoon in which it undergoes a simi- 
lar transformation. 

To Prevent Hoths. — The facts 
above noted indicate the proper pre- 
cautions to be preserved. In general, 
the moths must be prevented from 



laying their eggs on valuable wool- 
ens, silks, furs, or feathers, and the 
eggs themselves, or larvae hatched 
from them, must be destroyed or re- 
moved before they can do serious 
damage. The measures necessary toi 
effect these results are: (1) a thor- 
oojgh cleaning of all wardrobes and 
other receptacles liable to be infected 
by moths, and of the floors, espe- 
cially the edges, on which woolen car- 
pets are laid. (2) Treatment with 
suitable preventives, and the frequent 
beating and brushing of woolen and 
other' articles, followed by exposure 
to outdoor air and sunshine. (3) 
Packing articles not required for im- 
mediate use in tight receptacles, 
after first removing from them all 
moths' eggs or larvae with which they 
may be infested. Various moth pre- 
ventives and moth destroyers have 
been discovered, all of which will be 
carefully indicated. 

Preventives Against Moths. — Pre- 
ventives against moths are of vari- 
ous kinds, as repellents, poisons, and 
various mechanical methods. Expe- 
rience indicates that moths are averse 
to strong odors; hence among repel- 
lents may be mentioned naphthaline, 
moth balls, camphor, and various es- 
sential oils and perfumed woods. 
Other repellents are pepper, tobacco, 
and the like. Various substances 
applied to wardrobes, floors, and 
other moth-haunted receptacles also 
act as repellents, but it must be 
clearly understood that they cannot 
be depended upon. They merely 
tend to discourage the visits of the 
moths, but they do not destroy the 
moths, their eggs, or their larvae; 
hence if moths are present, and es- 
pecially if the receptacle which con- 
tains them is tightly closed and un- 
disturbed, they will deposit their 
eggs, and the young will hatch and 
feed practically the same in the pres- 
ence of these repellents as otherwise. 
Hence other preventive measures are 
necessary to insure protection against 
them. 

Repellents for Moths. — Among 
substances recommended as repellents 



306 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



against moths are paper dipped in 
melted parafiSn, cedar chests, cloves, 
cloths saturated with gasoline, sprigs 
of cedar, pine, or other evergreens, 
tallow candles, wood soaked with 
carbolic acid, pieces of Russia leath- 
er, and lavender. 

To Destroy Moths. — Chemicals and 
methods recommended for destroy- 
ing moths are fumigation with hy- 
drocyanic-acid gas or sulphurous- 
acid gas, the application of bisulphide 
of carbon, various petroleum products 
(especially gasoline and benzine), tur- 
pentine, solution of alum, corrosive 
sublimate, carbolic acid, chloroform, 
and the application of steam or hot 
water. 

To Fight Uoths. — In general, the 
following methods are recommended: 
in April or May, at the time of 
spring house cleaning, carry out of 
doors the contents of all wardrobes, 
bureau drawers, boxes, etc., contain- 
ing woolens, furs, feathers, or other 
articles made of animal products, 
and empty them on a large quilt or 
sheet spread upon the grass. Choose 
for this purpose a clear, sunny day 
with a gentle breeze. Hang large 
articles on the line and beat them; 
afterwards brush them carefully with 
a stiff whisk broom, especially un- 
derneath the collars, lapels, and oth- 
er similar places. Turn pockets in- 
side out and brush them. Let them 
air in the sun as long as possible. 
Shake and brush thoroughly the 
smaller articles. Finally separate 
those that are likely to be used dur- 
ing the summer months, and lay 
aside all others to be packed in moth- 
tight receptacles and stored. 

While these articles are airing, ap- 
ply suitable moth destroyers to the 
inside of the empty wardrobes, chests 
of drawers, and boxes, and, if con- 
venient, set them out of doors in the 
sun to air. Return to closets and 
chests of drawers the articles likely 
to be in constant use during the 
summer. Wrap those to be stored in 
newspapers or tar paper, carefully 
sealing the opening witii flour paste, 
and label the packages. Or fold the 



articles in suitable paper, place them 
in pasteboard or wooden boxes, and 
paste strips of paper around the 
covers and joints and over all cracks 
so as to make the receptacles moth 
proof. 

Adult moths cannot bite, hence 
they are unable to make their way 
through the thinnest layer of paper 
or other protective covering. The 
larvae will not ordinarily chew wood, 
cotton, linen, or paper, especially 
newspaper, but both the moths and 
their larvae will penetrate very mi- 
nute cracks and crevices. Hence 
protection is to be found only in 
tightly closing all such openings with 
paper and paste. Put no dependence 
upon moth balls or other repellents. 

To Protect Clothes Against Uoths. 
— Clothing in closets, wardrobes, or 
chests of drawers not sealed may be 
protected against moths by tight 
bags or sacks of cotton or linen, or 
by wrapping in newspapers carefully 
pasted together at the edges; but at 
least once a week the contents of 
wardrobes and all articles of wool, 
fur, or feathers not sealed against 
moths should be carried to the open 
air, shaken or beaten, brushed thor- 
oughly, and hung on a line to air 
during the heat of the day. This 
practice is also advisable on grounds 
of hygiene, personal cleanliness, and 
economy. Clothing thus cared for 
will last longer, present a fitter ap- 
pearance, and be free from germs, 
mold, and other forms of impurity. 

Substituting oiled or painted bare 
floors, and using rugs instead of car- 
pets in summer time are effective 
measures against moths, but if car- 
pets are used, care should be taken 
to sweep with especial thoroughness 
along the edges between the carpet 
and the baseboard. 

To Hepel Moths. — Line drawers 
and other receptacles with newspa- 
pers or wrap articles in newspapers. 
Moths do not like printer's ink. 

Or place articles in unbleached 
cotton bags. Moths do not like cot- 
ton. 

Or put gum camphor in and about 



HOUSEHOLD AND GARDEN PESTS 



307 



the articles. Or shavings of cedar 
wood or camphor wood inclosed in 
small cotton bags. 

Or put allspice, black pepper, the 
seeds of the musk plant, tansy leaves, 
lavender flowers, juniper berries, or 
bits of sponge, paper, or linen mois- 
tened with turpentine, or Cayenne 
pepper or tobacco or, in fact, almost 
any substance or combination of sub- 
stances which has a strong pungent 
and lasting odor, in and among the 
articles to be protected. Probably 
crystals of naphthaline are as effec- 
tive as any repellent that can be 
mentioned. 

Or place a vial containing chloro- 
form, and having a small slit or hole 
in the cork through which it can 
slowly evaporate, where the fumes 
will penetrate the articles. 

To Destroy ItCoths. — Fumigate with 
hydrocyanic-acid gas or sulphur . or 
camphor. 

Or brush out and dust the inside 
of closets, wardrobes, and chests of 
drawers, brush floors that have been 
or are to be covered by woolen car- 
pets, and wash the woodwork, espe- 
cially all cracks and crevices, with 
hot soapsuds. Then apply a strong 
solution of alum dissolved in boil- 
ing water (1 or 2 pounds to the 
gallon). 

Or a strong solution of carbolic 
acid or spirits of turpentine, kero- 
sene, benzine, or gasoline. 

Or a solution of creolin in water. 

Apply any of these by means of a 
brush or spring-bottom oil can or 
atomizer. Take care to work it into 
^the cracks by means of a small 
brush, a long feather, or otherwise. 

To Protect Carpets from Uotlis. — 
Sprinkle the floor with turpentine. 
Benzine, gasoline, or petroleum, or 
scatter peppermint or other fragrant 
herbs upon it, before the carpet is 
laid. 

Or, if a carpet becomes infested 
while on the floor, sponge the infest- 
ed spots with a solution of 60 grains 
of corrosive sublimate dissolved in 1 
pint of alcohol. 

Or apply gasoline freely to the 



carpet by means of a sponge, brush, 
atomizer, or sprinkler. 

Or apply turpentine freely. Any 
of these will destroy the eggs and 
larva;. 

Or sprinkle borax freely about the 
edges of the carpet and work it into 
the pile of the carpet beneath heavy 
pieces of furniture and other spots 
that cannot be easily swept. 

Or spread a damp towel above the 
suspected places in the carpet and 
iron it dry with a very hot iron. 
Do the same round the edges of the 
carpet, under heavy furniture, and 
at other places not frequently swept. 
The hot steam destroys the eggs and 
larvae. 

Or, if necessary, take up the car- 
pet, beat it as clean as possible, re- 
move the grease spots, and sponge 
carefully on both sides with a mix- 
ture of 1 pint of turpentine to 1 
gallon of water. Wash the floor with 
hot suds made of borax with the 
addition of turpentine, and apply 
around the edges a strong solution 
of alum, carbolic acid, or creolin. 

To Protect Furs from Moths. — 
Beat the furs, using preferably a 
piece of rubber hose. This will not 




"Beat Furs vHth Rubber Hose." 

cut or tear them. Comb them over 
with a steel comb and expose them 
to direct sunshine in the open air. 
Shake and brush each piece care- 
fully, wrap it separately in newspa- 
per, paste the edges tightly, label it. 



308 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



and lay it away in a drawer, chest, or 
wooden box where the paper in which 
it is wrapped will not be broken. 

Or, to prevent accidental breaking 
of the wrappers, lay the packages in 
pasteboard or wooden boxes and seal 
the joints with newspaper and paste. 
Cedar chests, moth balls, or other re- 
pellents are not necessary if all moths, 
eggs, and larvae are first removed and 
the furs are packed tightly; but there 
can be no objection to sprinkling 
naphthaline crystals, red or black 
pepper, various essential oils, and 
other substances having strong odors 
among the furs, or to wrapping up in 
them pieces of gum camphor, tallow 
candle, etc. 

Or, instead of newspapers, put the 
articles in tight pillow slips or un- 
bleached cotton bags, tying these tight- 
ly at the tops. Moths will not pene- 
trate cotton or newspaper. 

Or furs may be washed in a solution 
of 13 grains of corrosive sublimate in 
1 pint of warm water. 

Cold Storage for Furs. — Many fur- 
riers and most of the large depart- 
ment stores in cities have arrange- 
ments for placing valuable furs in cold 
storage during the summer months. 
A temperature as low as 40° F. will 
prevent the depredations of moths, 
and many warehouses maintain as low 
a temperature as 20° F. These estab- 
lishments insure furs against loss or 
damage. 

Mixtures for Moths. — Dissolve 4 
ounces of alum in 1 pint of water. 
Add 4 ounces of salt and i pint of 
spirits of turpentine. 

Or dissolve 1 ounce of camphor and 
1 ounce of carbolic acid in 1 pint of 
benzine. 

Or dissolve 1 ounce of gum cam- 
phor and 1 ounce of red pepper in 8 
ounces of alcohol. 

Petroleum Products for Moths. — 
Gasoline, benzine, and naphtha may be 
freely applied to all woolen goods, gar- 
ments, carpets, upholstered furniture, 
and the like by sprinkling or saturat- 
ing the articles by means of a small 
watering pot having a fine spray, 
an atomizer, a sponge, brush, or rag. 



Or they may be applied freely to 
floors, the inside of wardrobes, and 
other receptacles. 

Or turpentine may be used in the 
same manner as petroleum products. 

Corrosive Sublimate for Moths. — 
Mix in a glass bottle 1 ounce of cor- 
rosive sublimate and J pint of water. 
Let stand a day or two and shake oc- 
casionally. Then add J pint of alco- 
hol. Apply to cracks in floors, ward- 
robes, drawers, and other receptacles, 
or other suspected places. The liquid 
soaks into the wood, leaving a thin 
powder of corrosive sublimate on the 
surface. Do not allow this mixture 
to touch brass or copper. It is very 
poisonous to human beings. 

Camphor for Moths. — This is mere- 
ly a repellent and does not destroy 
moths. Gum camphor may be wrapped 
up in articles to be stored, or placed 
in and about articles in wardrobes and 
chests, or it may be dissolved in al- 
cohol and sprinkled upon them, but 
the former is the better method. 

Tobacco for Moths. — Tobacco may 
be used in the form of snuff sprinkled 
on articles stored away, or in and 
about floors, wardrobes, etc. Or fine- 
cut tobacco may be sprinkled freely 
in the receptacles, or among the arti- 
cles themselves, or about floors or im- 
der woolen carpets; or a strong in- 
fusion of tobacco steeped in water 
may be used to wash or sprinkle wood- 
work, or applied to cracks and crev- 
ices, etc. 

Pepper for Moths. — Black or Cay- 
enne pepper may be freely sprinkled 
in receptacles or among the articles 
themselves. 

Borax for Moths. — Borax may be 
used with water to make suds to wash 
woodwork, or scattered dry about 
floors or the inside of receptacles. 

To Trap Moth Millers. — A deep 
dish partly filled with sweetened mUk, 
on which a candle is floated, support- 
ed by a piece of light wood or a cork, 
is said to form an effective trap for 
moth millers where they are very nu- 
merous. 

To Store Furs and Woolens. — A 
cedar-wood chest, in which to store 



HOUSEHOLD AND GARDEN PESTS 



309 



furs and woolens against moths, was 
formerly thought indispensable, but 
many substitutes are now in use that 
are cheaper and just as good. Empty 
lard cans which may be had of butch- 
ers and grocers are excellent. They 
are light, tight, and take up little 
room. Ordinary tin bread or cake 
boxes are good, but they must be 
wrapped up in paper or have paper 
pasted over the joints. Large paper 
flour sacks are excellent. The tops 
must be pasted together after the ar- 
ticles have been inserted. 

Or pasteboard boxes that are used 
by dealers to deliver garments, or dry- 
goods boxes lined with newspapers or 
with tarred paper pasted carefully to 
the insides. 

Or old trunks lined in the same 
manner. 

Or a cask or barrel that has been 
used for whisky, wine, or alcohol, and 
still smells strongly of alcohol. 

To Store Bedding. — Line a large 
dry-goods box with several thick- 
nesses of newspapers pasted smoothly 
on the inside, or use one or more lay- 
ers of tarred paper. Shake and air 
the articles, fold and pack them in 
this box, and paste papers on the cov- 
er in such a way that they will pro- 
ject several inches outside. Fold these 
edges downward and paste them to 
the sides of the box so as to make a 
tight joint, and finally tack down the 
lid. 

Moths in Feathers. — Moths will not 
get into feather pillows, feather beds, 
etc., unless the ticks are ripped or 
torn, but should they infest feathers, 
the best remedy is to boil the feathers 
for half an hour or more, and after- 
wards wash and dry them. 

Or soak feathers thoroughly with 
benzine or gasoline. 

To Store Garments. — To protect 
winter garments, such as suits, over- 
coats, and the like, left hanging in 
closets or wardrobes during the sum- 
mer, place one or more suits and over- 
coats on a good clothes hanger and 
prepare a bag of unbleached cotton 
or any old cotton cloth large enough 
to cover the whole while hanging in 



its natural shape. Draw this up over 
the garments and tie at the top with 
a hard knot. 

A section of a barrel hoop covered 
with cotton cloth and having a piece 
of old broomstick fastened between 
the two ends of the' crescent makes 
a good clothes hanger. A pair of 
trousers may be folded and hung over 
the rod, and coats and overcoats hung 
upon the convex side. A piece of 
stout twine or wire may be adjusted 
in the middle to hang by. 

To Prepare Sarments for Packing. 
— Wash or dry-clean all woolen gar- 
ments before packing them away for 
the summer. Remove especially all 
grease spots, which are very attractive 
to moths, and by decaying tend to in- 
jure the fabrics. This takes time, but 
saves clothes and money. 

To Clean Purs. — Before packing, 
clean dark furs by heating bran or 
oatmeal. Rub this thoroughly into 
the fur while warm. Remove by shak- 
ing and repeat if necessary. Beat the 
furs with a piece of rubber pipe and 
comb them with a steel comb. 

Clean white furs by laying them on 
a flat surface and rubbing them with 
bran moistened in warm water. Ap- 
ply the bran with a flannel, rub until 
dry, and afterwards apply dry bran. 
Shake clean, and apply magnesia 
against the grain of the fur. Shake, 
beat, and air well before packing. 

To Pack Clothes. — ^Wash, dry-clean, 
shake, and air. Button coats and 
waists; fill sleeves and bodies vrith 
crushed newspapers. Place one upon 
another. Newspapers prevent creases. 
In folding skirts and trousers, place 
newspapers, not crushed, where the 
folds come and fold them inside the 
garments. Wrap loosely in newspa- 
pers separate articles .when folded, 
and store them in boxes, trunks, or 
chests lined with newspaper or tarred 
paper. Label each package sepa- 
rately. 

Wrap silk, linen, and other delicate 
articles in colored tissue papers. Chem- 
icals used to bleach white paper will 
turn them yellow. Do not use news- 
papers. 



310 



HOUSEHOLD DISCOVERIES 



To Remove Odors. — Musty and oth- 
er unpleasant odors in goods packed 
and stored may be prevented by 
sprinkling charcoal in and about the 
articles, and putting lumps of char- 
coal in the receptacle in which they 
are stored. 

To Store Silk. — To prevent silks or 
woolen goods from turning yellow 
when packed and stored, break up a 
few pieces of genuine white beeswax, 
fold loosely in cheese cloth, and place 
among the goods. Wrap up the arti- 
cles in old white linen or cotton cloth. 
Do not use white paper. It will turn 
them yellow. 

To Pack and Store Linen. — Wash 
linen articles, rinse without bluing or 
starch, and rough dry. 

To Store Lace. — Cover lace with 
powdered magnesia to prevent its 
turning yellow. 

Whitewash for Vermin. — Prepare 
whitewash as usual, and add to 1 gal- 
lon 4 ounces of corrosive sublimate or 
2 ounces of powdered copperas pre- 
viously dissolved in boiling water. 

Alum Wash for Vermin. — Dissolve 
1 or 2 pounds of alum to 1 gallon of 
water by boiling until dissolved. Ap- 
ply with an oil can, a brush, or other- 
wise. 

Benzine Wash for Vermin. — Make 
suds of hard white or yellow soap, 
using about J bar of soap to 1 pailful 
of water, and add 1 pint of benzine. 
Use to wash floors or woodwork. Ap- 
ply with a brush, mop, or otherwise. 

Phosphorus Paste for Vermin. — 
Mix 2 -drams of phosphorus with 2 
ounces of lard, and add 6 ounces of 
flour and 2 ounces of brown sugar, 
making the whole into a paste with a 
little water. Add to this for rats or 
mice a small quantity of cheese. 

But remember that phosphorus is 
easily set on fire by friction, also that 
it must not be allowed to fall on the 
skin, as it burns the flesh, forming a 
dangerous ulcer. Hence pure phos- 
phorus, which is. a solid, is kept under 
water and handled by means of pin- 
cers or a sharp-pointed penknife. 

To mix the above, place the phos- 
phorus in a wide-mouthed glass bot- 



tle and pour over it an ounce or so of 
alcohol. Immerse the bottle in hot 
water until the phosphorus is melted. 
Cork it and shake vigorously until 
cold. Pour off the spirit, mix the 
phosphorus and lard, and add the 
other ingredients previously mixed to- 
gether. 

Salberg Vermin Wash. — Mix bi- 
chloride of mercury, 2 ounces ; spirits 
of turpentine, 6 ounces ; muriatic acid, 
1 ounce; water, 100 ounces. 

CAEPET BEETLE OE "BXriTALO 
MOTH " 

The destructive habits of these 
common and injurious pests are well 
known. The mischief is done by this 
insect in its larval stage, when it 
feeds upon woolen goods, particu- 
larly carpets. It is then rather less 




Fig. 1. — The Carpet Beetle: a, Adult; b, Pujta, 
Ventral View; c. Pupa within Larval SHn; 
d, Larva, Dorsal View. All enlarged Urom 
Bileii). 

than a fourth of an inch in length, 
and is covered with stiff brown hair. 
It is often discovered working about 
the edges of carpets making irregu- 
lar holes or following the line of a 
floor crack, and thus cutting the car- 
pet in a long slit. It is most com- 
mon in the northern and eastern por- 
tions of the United States, and most 
active in the summer months, al- 
though in well-heated houses it may 
continue its depredations the year 
round. The adult insect is a black 
and white beetle, having a red stripe 
down its back. It is rather less than 
one fourth of an inch in length. 

The carpet beetle is rarely 'found 
in houses having polished floors with 
rugs, straw mattings, or oilcloth as 
floor coverings, and this fact suggestSi 



HOUSEHOLD AND GARDEN PESTS 



Sll 



the most effective remedy. When the 
house has become infested with these 
insects, it is very difficult to eradicate 
them. Thorough house cleaning at 
least twice a year is advisable. And 
a special house cleaning toward the 
middle or latter part of the summer 
is particularly effective. Take up the 
carpets, beat them, spray with ben- 
zine, and hang on the line to air in 
the direct sunshine all day. Wash 
down floors and spray the floor and 
crevices about the baseboards with 
benzine or kerosene. Meantime open 
the windows and ventilate thoroughly 
before introducing a light. Fill all 
floor cracks and cracks about the 
baseboards with suitable crack-fillers, 
as elsewhere recommended, and, if 
possible, before relaying the carpet, 
cover the floor with a lining of 
tarred roofing paper. Tack the car- 
pet loosely, and occasionally look un- 
der the edges to see if insects have 
put in an appearance. In that case 
lay a wet cloth over the spot and iron 
dry with a very hot iron. Steam un- 
til the insects are exterminated. Or 
fumigate the premises with sulphur 
or bisulphide of carbon or hydro- 
cyanic-acid gas. 



THE HOUSE CEKTIFEDE 

This insect is most commonly found 
in moist, warm localities, as in cel- 
lars, closets, and bathrooms. Its well- 
known appearance, rapid movements, 
and the fact that its bite is supposed 
to be poisonous, causes it to be an 
object of alarm. The centipede prob- 
ably never bites human beings except 
in self-defense, but it is known to be 
carnivorous in its habits and feeds 
upon roaches, bedbugs, and other in- 
sects. The effect of its bite depends 
upon the susceptibility of the indi- 
vidual, but in the case of most per- 
sons, it is very slightly poisonous, 
causing an inflammation similar to 
that of a mosquito bite, which may be 
allayed by promptly treating it with 
aqua ammonia. This insect rarely 
occurs in suflicient numbers to make 
any special mode of treatment neces- 



sary. Open plumbing and care to 
avoid the accumulation of moisture 
in any part of the house are the best 
preventives. Bathrooms, closets, and 
other localities where they harbor 
may be inspected